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A Brief History

1871 New Zealand's first Golf club formed the Otago Golf Club .
1873 Christchurch Golf Club formed
1890 Golf begins to flourish in the South Island and consequently spreads north.
1893 Inaugural New Zealand Amateur Championships.
1896 Inaugural New Zealand Ladies Amateur Championships.
1899 A National Organisation called the Golf Council is established.
1905 Ladies become affiliated to the British Ladies Golf Union.
1907 Inaugural New Zealand Open Championship.
1910 New Zealand Golf Association is formally established,
  Ladies Golf Union of New Zealand is established.
1924 6,000 men and 4,000 women are regular players .
1932 First radio coverage of the New Zealand Open Championships.
1933 Inaugural Tasman Cup.
1939 328 clubs now affiliated with New Zealand Golf Assoc. 29,000 golfers are now registered.
1951 Centenary Golf Tournament - First Interprovincial Team Tournament.
1954 Womens' District Golf Associations are established.
1959 Inaugural Commonwealth Tournament for Women.
1963 R.J. (Bob) Charles wins the British Open Championship at Royal Lytham & St Annes.
1964 16 District Golf Associations now formed.
1970 59,000 male and 35,000 female registered members of clubs.
1986 Inaugural Freyberg Masters Interprovincial Teams Championships
1990 New Zealand host the Eisenhower Trophy at Christchurch Golf Club and achieve 2nd place.
1991 98,189 registered golfers in New Zealand.
1993 New Zealand Golf win four Halberg Sports Awards.
1995 113,587 registered golfers in New Zealand
1998 124,997 registered golfers in New Zealand.
  World Cup of Golf held at Gulf Harbour Country Club.
1999 R.J. (Bob) Charles receives a knighthood.
2000 NZGA introduces USGA Slope Handicap and Course Rating System The public website is launched, Michael Campbell first New Zealander to break into the top 20 golfers in the world, 130,660 registered golfers in New Zealand.
2001 132,063 registered golfers in New Zealand
2002 Tiger Woods competes in the New Zealand Open finishing 6th, NZ Golfers win on every major tour. On the US PGA Tour Craig Perks wins the Players Championship & Phil Tataurangi the Invensys Classic in Las Vegas. In Europe Michael Campbell wins the European Open, and in Japan David Smail wins the Japan Open. In April 2002 eight New Zealand golfers are ranked in the top 200 in the world.
2003 NZ Golf introduces the Mid-Amateur Championship for competitive golfers over the age of over 30, with the inaugural event won by Dean Sipson.
2004 Fifty years after winning his first NZ Open Title at the Wellington Golf Club in 1954, Sir Bob Charles plays in his last NZ Open at the Grange Golf Club in Auckland in 2004.

Why do Golf Courses have 18 Holes?

The Old Course at the Royal and Ancient Club, St Andrews - the home of Golf and its standard Golfing Rules - originally had 12 Holes.

Golfers reaching the final hole would turn around and play the whole course in reverse, with the exception of the 12th and first holes, creating a 22 hole round.

So it remained until 4th October 1764, when the Captain and Gentlemen Golfers of the Society at St Andrews decided that the first four holes were to short.

These were consolidated into Two Holes by decree, leaving 10 actual and 18 Holes in a complete round, by not playing the 10th and first holes in the reverse order.

New Zealand Golf Course Information

6 hole courses 1
9 hole courses 183
18 hole courses 211
18+ hole courses 5

About New Zealand Golfers

A McNair Survey states 460,000 people say they play golf.
Of these 132,063 are registered members of Clubs.

It is estimated that the average member plays three times a month and a further 298,300 say they play golf some time during the year as social golfers.

31% of golfers live in the South Island compared to 69% in the North Island.

For all updated information please go to New Zealand Golf 

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