Peer Review #1

One of my objections to going to BIRDIE was that the members couldn’t be depended on to enter their scores correctly.   I was told that was OK because it was peer reviewable.   Here is one member’s last scores.

Date Blog BIRDIE
2018-06-14 93w ??? no score on BIRDIE
2018-06-16 95 96
2018-06-18 98 98
2018-06-21 92 Happy City — no report
2018-06-23 87 87
2018-06-25 101 101
2018-06-30 99 99
2018-07-02 97 97
2018-07-05 96 96
2018-07-07 91 91
2018-07-09 96 96
2018-07-12 93 92
2018-07-14 102 102
2018-07-16 91 no scores on report
2018-07-19 94 no scores on report
2018-07-23 96 97
2018-07-28 95 93
2018-08-02 100 100
2018-08-04 106 104
2018-08-06 100 103
2018-08-09 102 102

Five for the last 20 scores entered into BIRDIE differ from the scores on the blog.

Three of the last 20 scores aren’t on the blog so how is it peer reviewable?


Skins — Anyone?

3 absolutely wrong statements.

  • 1) When the range of likely scores is that wide, it becomes ridiculous to worry about whether a particular golfer’s handicap is 25.4, 24.8, or 23.4.  In technical terms, the “signal to noise” ratio is too great to fine tune the handicap to that level of detail.

I have already ridiculed the above several times but you will see that a 2 stroke difference does matter.

  • 2) The person who “dropped anchor” by avoiding getting 30 or over was well within his rights to do so. If you look at it another way, he lost B250 by avoiding losing B100, because he could have gotten a good score on one of those back nine holes. Not a winning strategy long term.

It isn’t a good strategy to win the stableford on that day.  It is an excellent strategy for skins long term.   The Administrators have never said that dropping anchor (DA) is illegal and they have removed “cheaters will be taken out and shot” from the Code of Conduct.  There are 25 skins up for grabs.   Three in the stableford.  Let’s forget those for the moment and concentrate on the other 22 skins.   Look at your most recent scorecard.   How many 1’s did you get?  Suppose you missed all those putts for 1, how would that have affected your skins for the day?   Unless you were in the top 2 for the stableford money it wouldn’t.   Suppose you missed all those putts for a 2, how would that have affected your skins for the day?  Most likely that wouldn’t have made a difference either.  Add 3 to 5 missed putts to your round each day and you will find that your handicap will go up quickly but your skins won and lost won’t change.  Look at your most recent scorecard again.   Suppose your handicap has gone up 4 strokes.  Which 4 holes would you have got another stroke?   Would you have been in the skins money if you had another stroke on those holes?   Quite possibly.   Missing putts that don’t matter is another form of DA—illegal but effective.   The more your handicap goes up the more holes you will win and the more likely you can win the stableford.

  • 3) In our experience, skins is genuinely random, and it gives as often as it takes.

The cards in a poker game are random.   A poor player can beat a good player if he gets the right cards.  However, over the long run the better player will come out ahead.   There is skill and strategy involved.  Skins are no different.   There is a reason I won money the last 9 times I played with SMAF.   A positive result in 11 out of the last 12 for over 3400 baht.

I never deliberately hit a bad shot or deliberately missed a putt.  I entered all my scores into Birdie accurately.  I didn’t break any rules!  Birdie gives everyone an extra stroke and I found a way of getting another extra stroke and used it to my advantage.  I frequently got a 4 pointer on those 2 bonus holes and once I even got a 5 pointer.

The undeniable fact is that no matter how much 5Points wants to claim there is a signal to noise ratio there is a need for the handicaps to be accurate.  Two shots is a huge difference.  Recent visitors immediately saw how the integrity of the skins game had deteriorated and they lost interest.  Other friends refuse to play skins as well.   Previously the skins game was fair because the handicaps were affected by the money list.   This levelled the playing field.  When you have a Dictator that doesn’t fully understand why you need accurate handicaps and his companion, the incompetent Bozo who couldn’t even enter the scores into the computer correctly you are not going to get a fair result.   Don’t think for a moment that I am the only one with a skins strategy – I have seen others do things that make me go hmmmm.

I am gone and now you claim to have great company that is fun.   More and more are finding out that skins with SMAF is not fair and not fun.

Code of Conduct

The Mode of Play/Code of Conduct can be found on both this blog as well as the “new” blog.   Over 3 years ago I researched other farang golf groups and I picked out the best of what they had.   It was intended to be very simple and not wanting to make the same mistakes as our previous group not dictatorial.   We all had the right to discuss issues of the day.   After all was discussed the Commissioner was to make the final decision on what was best for future of the group.   The decisions were to be made based on right and wrong as opposed to who had the most friends and whom they wished to screw over.  In short it was about RESPECT.    Respect each other and respect the rules.  This worked very well for 3 years.

  • Last year a member flat-out refused to play with another member (me) and didn’t really tell the other members why.   The Commissioner (Graham) correctly informed the member that he had to go in the draw for playing partners or he couldn’t play with the group.   Sometime after that 5Points told the member he could come back to the group and that he would rig the draw so the member didn’t have to play with me.   5Points didn’t get the Commissioner’s permission to extend such an invitation and he certainly didn’t discuss it with the group.   I was forced to deal with disrespect from this member each and every time he showed up.   I complained numerous times to 5Points and finally he said he didn’t want to hear about it anymore.   It was OK with him that I was treated with disrespect.
  • The Anchor Dropping Incident. I was not allowed to present the rules infraction at the table in a polite and respectful discussion.
  • When 5Points set up the new blog he copied the Mode of Play/Code of Conduct from this blog. He left out the following – “Outright cheating is defined as knowingly breaking the rules with the intention of getting an unfair gain.  Outright cheaters will be told not to compete with us again.”  Why was this removed?   To my knowledge there was no discussion on this.   Why wouldn’t you want to discourage cheating?
  • The Transition to Birdie – At no time was there a meeting or discussion with the members on this. They did this at a time when the fewest number or members were in town.

With regard to the Transition to Birdie I asked why there was no meeting as the Code of Conduct required.   I was told “Don’t talk to us about the Code of Conduct.”  If they are going to ignore it then why have it on their blog.   The answer “It is there just as a guideline.”   A couple days later 5Points informed me that “we do the work, we make the rules.”  In other words they are above the rules and no longer need to respect the wishes of the other members.   However, we have to respect their decisions because they do the work and apparently they know what is best for all.

I should also point out that this blog is a violation of the Code of Conduct.  However, it became impossible to have any discussions with them so it left me little choice.   Ask why?   The answer is “because we said so.”

Recently I was asked if there was a chance things would get back to the way it was when it all went smoothly.    If you ask the Administrators they will tell you it will now that I am gone.   I am the troublemaker, I create the problems.  They have missed the point completely.  I created the problems because they failed to respect the members, respect the rules, respect the handicaps and above all respect the integrity of the group.   They have failed to realise that the community is becoming aware that SMAF competitions are not fair.  Not fair is not fun.

SMAF started out 3.5 years ago with just 8 members.  A couple of days ago there were 17, now 16.  As memberships come up for renewal members will have to decide if putting out 110,000 baht and committing for another 2 years is worth it.  Will they want to continue to deal with the excessive course maintenance, bogus handicaps, and the 5Points dictatorship?   Only time will tell.

My Last Round with SMAF

I was in a really good mood and looking forward to my final round with SMAF on Saturday.  That all ended quickly when 5Points came up and told me in a most accusatory way that I hadn’t put in my most recent scores.   Very true, I hadn’t.   I explained that according to the USGA handicap manual handicaps are to be updated not more than twice a month and I would be doing the update on the 15th.  In fact, Graham had posted the rules regarding frequency of updates on this blog on March 6th.  5Points informed me that they were changing the rules and I agreed that once the rules were officially changed I would abide by them.  I got to thinking.   Numerous times I have reported that some scores of others weren’t submitted, some scores were wrong, and the handicap calculations weren’t being done correctly but 5Points didn’t seem to care.   5Points instructs members to get their last 20 scores from Graham to set up their Birdie handicaps.   I have previously shown that the scores that Graham sends are not accurate while I do follow the rules and do it accurately.   Why doesn’t 5Points instruct the members to get their last 20 scores from me?  5Points who thinks he is another Albert Einstein has discovered that handicaps have a signal to noise ratio which means it is OK to be wrong by one or two strokes.   He is prepared to accept total crap from the other members but he makes a point of mentioning my latest score has not been submitted.  Why was he concerned with my handicap?  Was the signal to noise ratio setting off an alarm?

Graham arrived about 5 minutes later and he too, said the exact same thing making it sound like I had done something wrong.   Once again I explained the rules to him and informed him of when I would be updating my scores.   He walked away and mumbled “Fuck off”.   To make matters worse, Graham and I were drawn together for the first group.   Unfortunately Merv had to play with 2 golfers that weren’t talking to each other but he did have a good round and made the best of the situation.   Not for the first time, Graham walked off the 18th green without shaking my hand.

The 3 of us got around in just over 3 hours and we had to wait about 40 minutes for the next group to finish.   By then I had finished my lunch.   I had had enough of Graham’s rudeness, made arrangements for someone to look after my skins money and left.

On the last handicap list that Graham published (June 29) my name was left off the members list.   I was still a member!  It was personal and highly disrespectful.    I am on the current list but I am neither a member (correct) nor a friend (as insulting as that is – correct).   I am in a category of my own.   Now that I am not a member they have my permission to remove my name.

Why the rudeness?  I had always backed Graham 100% with the handicaps even though I suspected they weren’t 100% correct.  He was doing his best so why make an issue of this?  This only became an issue when they decided on the transition to Birdie without discussing it with the members first and not giving a good reason why.    I offered to help them quietly go back to the way it was when there were no problems.  They chose to continue transitioning to Birdie which exposed the fact that Graham was incapable of accurately inputting up to 12 scores into a computer 3 times a week. (A one minute job.)  If Graham is embarrassed by this, it was their choice.

The goal of the group is to HAVE FUN.   I showed up to play my last round of SMAF golf to HAVE FUN.   Those who are running the show did their best to see that I didn’t.

Farewell to SMAF

My membership expires today so yesterday was my last day with SMAF.   For the past few months I have found them not to be “fun and friendly” as their blog claims.   There were 2 major incidents this year.   The first one was the “Anchor Dropping”.   Most members were unaware that anchor dropping is a violation of the rules as set out by the USGA handicapping manual.   On a one time basis this is not a real concern.   However, if allowed to continue then the dropper’s handicap lose its integrity.   I brought it up and in their ignorance the members shouted me down.  There was never an apology or an admission of wrongdoing by the Administrators.    It was a very simple matter that good leadership would have handled with one short statement.  “The guilty party as well as many members were unaware that anchor dropping is a form of handicap manipulation.   As such, all members are advised that anchor dropping is unacceptable.   We wish to thank the member who brought this to our attention.”

The second incident was over the Birdie handicap system.   The members were told that they had to switch without the system being checked out first.   Birdie was phased in and it was noticed that the handicaps weren’t the same as what was being produced by the Fairness Specialist.  As it turns out there were errors by the Fairness Specialist as well as incorrect calculations by Birdie.  It would be at this point there should have been a discussion of how to proceed to get it right.  I did the work to get the handicaps correct – they weren’t accepted by the Administrators.   They never said why.

At no time did I make this personal.   For me in both cases it was strictly about the handicaps and getting them right.   My only concern was the integrity of the group.   I tried to resolve this quietly with the Administrators.  They chose to go public with this and they defended it with a character assassination of me.  The members have had no choice but to accept Birdie because they are at a disadvantage if they don’t.

The Administrators have chosen to make this personal and I have been treated with considerable disrespect.

To those members that were always friendly, respectful and supportive of me I wish them the best and hope to have the opportunity to play golf with them some time in the future.

During the next few days there will be several posts which show the true character of the Administrators.   Unlike the “new” blog where comments are not allowed if they conflict with their views this blog will allow all comments as long as there isn’t any foul language.   Anyone wishing to make a posting on this blog can send me an email and I will post it unedited whether I agree with your views or not.   Feel free to email the link to this blog to others in Chiang Rai that may be interested.   As well, click on the “Follow” button to get all the new blog posts as they are published.  (You can unfollow at any time.)

Updated handicaps — Results July 12 – 23

Heard at the table while doing the skins calculation yesterday — “If I used my BS handicap I would have had 3 points” — He would have been in the share of the 4 skins.  I still have not had an answer from the Administrators why we continue to use BS handicaps.   It is obvious to most that those that don’t use a BS handicap are at a disadvantage.   Some don’t mind getting cheated BS’d out of a few baht — some do mind.

Updated Handicaps

I will be publishing the handicaps for all the members  and friends that have recently played with us every 2 weeks.  For those with 5 or more cards but less than 10 cards their handicap will be updated weekly.  All handicaps are peer reviewable.  All scores are recorded on this blog.  If anyone wants a listing of theirs or anyone else’s last 20 scores I will send it to them.  Only SMAF rounds played at Santiburi are included in the handicap calculation.   The course rating for all tees is as listed on the Santiburi golf course website.

Name Handicap Index Blue Handicap BS-hcp
Members: index (hcp)
Andrew 15.4 17 BS 18.8  (20)
Brian J 22.6 24
Bruce G 5.5 6 BS  6.5  (7)
Egbert 23.4 25 BS 23.9  (26)
Graham T 19.8 21 BS 20.1  (22)
Jim 31.8 34 down 3 BS  32.9  (36)
5Points 26.7 29 up 1 BS 27.0   (29)
John P 10.9 12 BS 13.5  (15)
Leo 19.5 21 BS 20.7  (22)
Les 29.6 32
Marc 18.9 20 down 1
Paul P 18 19 BS 17.9  (19)
Peter R 12.1 13
Young 28.9 29 red BS 29.2
Steve 32.1 35 b 32 (30) BS 31.4  (34b)
Bruce K 31.7 32 (30) BS 31.0  (31w)
Darryl 15.6 16 (13)
Woody 5.1 6 BS  3.4  (4)

For white tee competitions use your index rounded to the nearest whole number.

Darryl, Steve and Bruce K’s white handicaps are 16 / 32 / 32.   When competing against those on the blue tees they should use the number in brackets.

Results – Monday, July 23, 2018

stb score Players hcap Skins Money
27 97 Peter 16 0.33 -210
31 95 Andrew 18 0.33 -210
33 96 Graham 21 0.50 -190
33 96 Mark W 21 1 -130
35 88 Rob 15 1 -130
35 104 Jim S 31 1 -130
33 89 Mick 14 1.83 -30
34 102 5Points 28 2.33 30
35 107 Steve 34 2.67 70
35 95 Leo 22 3.67 190
40 75 Bruce G 7 3.83 210
40 87 Marc 19 6.5 530

Results – Saturday, July 21, 2018

stb score Players hcap Skins Money
17 102 Min 11 0 -250
20 116 5Points 28 0 -250
34 103 Young 29 1 -170
30 89 Lenny 11 2 -90
33 106 Jim S 31 3 -10
35 80 Bruce G 7 4.5 110
40 80 Martin 12 6.5 270
36 91 Paul P 19 8 390

Thursday Report 19/07/18

No scores posted on the blog.    From Birdie —  Bruce G( 77), Jim S (107), Steve M (107) and Graham(94)

Results Sat 14/07/18

Bruce     79       37pts  (posted 77 on Birdie)

Marc      91        36pts

Ruuner up

Jim        108        26pts

Graham 102      27pts

Results Thursday 12/07/18

stb score Players hcap Money
27 99 Peter Mac 18 30
38 92 Leo 22 270
36 93 Graham 21 -30
37 78 Bruce 7 -90
37 103 Jim 32 -30
DNF #### Steve – W 30 -150

Another Post on Handicaps

“Most of us have scored 27 Stableford points on one day and 43 Stableford points on the next round – a range of 16 points!  When the range of likely scores is that wide, it becomes ridiculous to worry about whether a particular golfer’s handicap is 25.4, 24.8, or 23.4….There is no way to know on any given day the “exactly right” handicap for any golfer with the skill level of the average SMAF participant.”

Yes, I have to go back to that quote again.   When I first read it I thought it was one of the most stupid things I have ever read about handicaps.   THEN,  someone whom I consider to be quite intelligent told me this week that he agrees with the statement.

The purpose of handicaps is to try and make it as absolutely fair as possible for each participant to win on a given day.   Of course no computer program or data analyst is able to determine in advance who is going to have or not have a good round.   There are 2 handicap systems, USGA and CONGU — both have large manuals with all their rules.   It is their belief that if you follow their rules you will get a fair result based on how each individual plays that day.   You must follow their rules as closely as possible in order to get it exactly right on that given day.   Neither system is perfect but one or the other is accepted by nearly 100% of the world’s golf organizations.   (Note:  that is more than the 2000+ golfers that use BIRDIE).

The difference between 25.4 and 23.4 is 2 stokes.  I recently determined that if I use the BS-hcp I would get 2 more strokes than using the USGA handicap that I had posted.   As this is acceptable to the SMAF Administrators I did so.   The 2 more strokes were on holes #2 and #18 which on the 2 days I used this handicap I was lucky enough to par (for 4 points).  I also won the Stableford on Monday by 2 strokes.  A profit of 1560 baht in the skins game over the 2 days which was used to buy beer for those that competed without BS-hcps.  Of course I am not going to get par on #2 and #18 every day but even once every 2 rounds is still a nice advantage.  The fact of the matter is that the BS-hcps are usually a stroke higher for each member and if you throw in a Happy City or Waterford score you can get it up another stroke.

The Administrators keep bringing up “Fun and Friendly”.   I would advise them that in my 18 years of playing with various groups I have found there to be 2 issues that are fun killers.   One, is cheaters and two, is the perception that handicaps aren’t correct.   It is my observation that the Administrators think ignoring those issues make it more “fun and friendly.”

Here are my analogies. 

  1. USGA handicaps using SMAF only scores.   “The Crystal Clear Pool”  .  Only rounds played as SMAF competitions are included.  All other rounds don’t count.   Counting non-SMAF rounds is peeing in the pool.   One person is responsible for ensuring the integrity of the pool.  This worked very well for over 3 years with no conflicts.  Our handicaps were accepted on the rare occasions we played elsewhere.
  2. Chiang Rai Golfers — CONGU handicaps.  “The Public Urinal” .  As both Waterford and Happy City are not rated they are not able to maintain a pool.  Only those that use the urinal (play as CRG competitions) are included.   One person is responsible for ensuring that the urinal is flushed regularly and kept clean.  Their handicaps work well within the group and are close enough to be compatible with the SMAF handicaps.
  3. BIRDIE — supposedly the same as USGA handicaps.  “The Thai Toilet” .  All rounds that you play may be included even though Waterford and Happy City are not officially rated.  BIRDIE doesn’t tell us where they got the ratings from or even what the ratings are.   That leads several of us to suspect they just made them up.  The Santiburi rating is wrong.   Anyone playing without a BIRDIE handicap on a Chiang Rai course against someone with a BIRDIE handicap is at a disadvantage.  A Thai toilet is something we all avoid and use only when absolutely necessary.   Everyone in the group gets to use it and no one is responsible for seeing that the toilet even gets flushed.  It would work well within the group if it were absolutely necessary.  It isn’t.
  4. The World Handicap System that the new SMAF blog has announced for 2020.  It is possible that it will be the answer to all our problems.  As “This Is Thailand” I would expect that the Thai courses will not get rated and that we will not be any further ahead than we are presently. 

What to do now?

As most of the membership are not presently in town I would suggest that we decide (each day) on the first tee which handicap we should all use (SMAF(USGA) or BIRDIE). The majority wins.   (Jokingly, I pick BIRDIE as long as I am winning.)   Once the majority of the members are here (perhaps 12 or more) then we take a vote and settle this once and for all.  I am not opposed to golfers maintaining BIRDIE handicaps if they feel they have a use for it outside of SMAF events.  I am just saying we had a system that was working and when done correctly eliminated all controversy.  The Dictators Administrators have decided that the members are too stupid to know what is best for us and haven’t given us a say in the decision.

Updated handicaps — Results June 28 -> July 9, 2018

I will be publishing the handicaps for all the members  and friends that have recently played with us every 2 weeks.  For those with 5 or more cards but less than 10 cards their handicap will be updated weekly.  All handicaps are peer reviewable.  All scores are recorded on this blog.  If anyone wants a listing of theirs or anyone else’s last 20 scores I will send it to them.  Only SMAF rounds played at Santiburi are included in the handicap calculation.   The course rating for all tees is as listed on the Santiburi golf course website.

I will be publishing another handicap commentary probably on Wednesday.

Updated Handicaps – Monday, July 9, 2018

Name Handicap Index Blue Handicap
Andrew 15.4 17  up 1
Brian J 22.6 24
Bruce G 5.9 6
Egbert 23.4 25
Graham T 19.2 21  up 1
5Points 26.2 28
John P 10.9 12
Leo 19.3 21
Les 29.6 32
Marc 19.8 21
Paul P 17.8 19
Peter R 12.1 13
Young 28.4 29 red
Darryl 15.6 16 (13)
Steve 31.6 32 31 (29)
Bruce K 31.7 32 (30)
Woody 5.1 6  up 1
Jim 34 37 36 max.
Mike D 13.4 14  8 cards
Peter Mac 13.4 14  6 cards
Rob B 14.7 16  8 cards

For white tee competitions use your index rounded to the nearest whole number.

Darryl, Steve and Bruce K’s white handicaps are 16 / 31 / 32.   When competing against those on the blue tees they should use the number in brackets.

Results – Monday, July 9, 2018

stb score Players hcap Skins Money
24 99 Peter Mac 15 0 -250
37 87 Rob B 16 2 -90
37 85 Mike D 14 2.5 -50
39 92 Leo 23 12.5 750
33 96 Graham 21 1 -170
33 82 Bruce G 7 2.5 -50
33 107 Jim 32 4 70
30 108 Steve – W 30 0.5 -210

Results – Saturday, July 7, 2018

stb score Players hcap Skins Money
32 89 Rob B 13 0.00 -250
32 105 Young 29 0.00 -250
20 116 5Points 28 0.83 -150
30 90 Mike D 12 1.00 -130
35 92 Paul P 19 1.00 -130
38 91 Graham 21 1.00 -130
33 79 Woody 4 1.50 -70
38 77 Bruce G 7 1.50 -70
31 92 Peter Mac 15 2.00 -10
24 115 Jim S 31 3.00 110
42 79 John P 13 4.33 270
41 90 Leo 23 8.83 810

Results – Thursday, July 5, 2018

stb score Players hcap Skins Money
17 119 5Points 28 1.00 -170
29 107 Paul M 28 1.00 -170
33 94 Paul P 19 1.83 -103
33 104 Young 29 1.83 -103
29 110 Jim S 31 2.00 -90
33 96 Graham 21 4.33 97
27 88 Bruce G 7 4.50 110
44 95 Steve – W 31 8.50 430

Results – Monday, July 2, 2018

stb score Players hcap Skins Money
21 105 Paul 18 0.00 -250
33 96 Leo 21 0.50 -205
34 81 Bruce G 7 1.00 -160
30 90 Mike D 12 2.00 -70
28 92 Rob B 12 2.50 -25
36 100 5Points 28 3.00 20
42 96 Young 30 4.00 110
32 97 Graham 21 5.50 245
42 97 Steve – W 31 6.50 335

Results – Saturday, June 30, 2018

stb score Players hcap Skins Money
24 111 Young 27 2.00 -100
30 99 Graham 21 2.00 -100
33 94 Andrew 19 2.00 -100
32 107 Les 31 2.50 -65
31 105 5Points 28 4.00 40
37 90 Paul 19 5.00 110
32 89 John P 13 6.50 215

Results – Thursday, June 28, 2018

stb score Players hcap Skins Money
20 100 Rob B 12 0.00 -250
24 96 Mike D 12 2.00 -150
28 108 5Points 28 2.00 -150
39 76 Bruce G 7 9.00 200
31 98 Leo 21 12.00 350

4) Too Many Questions — One Possible Answer

The side bet —  You and I are going out for a game of golf.   The one with the lower stableford score will pay the one with the higher score 100 baht.   The fine print clause “If either one of us has a really poor round (fails to score 30 points) then the bet is cancelled.”

Some SMAF members have been making that side bet for a long period of time.  Suddenly the really poor round clause has been quietly dropped.   If both members are trying to win what is the problem — why drop the clause?   Was Andrew “dropping anchor” last week not the first time this happened?

If I hadn’t been playing with Andrew or if Andrew hadn’t been so foolish to boast that he was going to drop anchor then I would not have noticed and reported it.   It is my opinion that the clause was dropped because I made an issue of it.

Why were those that had been participating in the side bet strongly defending Andrew’s behaviour as acceptable?  Why has the group defended his misconduct with “we think it was one bad golf day for the SMAF participant that can be dismissed like the bad golf days we have all had – and an informal poll of other SMAF members closely corresponds with our views on the matter.”?   If you have a bad golf day are you untitled to unsportsmanlike conduct?

I admit I did hijack this blog.   I was shouted down at the lunch table and it was the one resource I had to make my points.   I had fully intended to give the blog back to SMAF once my points had been addressed.   I offered to post anything they wanted completely unedited and once they were given back the blog they would be free to do whatever they wanted with it including delete my post(s).   When they came up with the “one bad golf day” excuse I took a stronger stance which was get Andrew to apologise or you don’t get the blog back.   They considered that coercion (which it was) and they started a new blog.   They told me I could do whatever I wanted with this one.

Why not force the member who certainly was guilty of misconduct (that’s a polite way of saying broke the rules) to apologise?   Mea Culpa.   It would have ended all of this.

The only possible answer for all the questions is perhaps one or two other members had been dropping anchor — would that not be a reason for the way they handled this?   Those that dropped anchor or knew of other incidents and didn’t report it wouldn’t have been in a position to criticize Andrew would they?  I now suspect that dropping anchor had been going on for a while.

Although I have no proof that this wasn’t a solitary incident it would certainly explain why other members went through extremely bad patches and their handicaps went up.  They weren’t deliberately manipulating their handicaps but their handicaps could have gone up due to anchor dropping.   I have always defended SMAF handicaps and the skins game as being fair.   I can no longer say with 100% certainty that they were indeed fair.  MY PROBLEM is that I now believe the integrity of the group has been compromised.

SMAF’s probable response to the above is here.

MY PROBLEM is that after doing the majority of the work for 3 years to promote and build SMAF I was shouted down in a most disrespectful way.  This is not how we sorted things out in the past.

MY PROBLEM is that even if dropping anchor were acceptable that members would resort to such measures to get out of paying a 100 baht bet.   I don’t accept poor sportsmanship.  A bet is a bet.

I resigned but have been told that I am welcome back if I chose to do so.  Their new blog (  says “come join us for a fun, friendly round of golf”.   When I announced that I was permanently leaving one member shouted out “GOOD”.    MY PROBLEM is that I don’t call that “friendly” or “welcoming”.

My PROBLEM is that I have too many problems with the way that SMAF has evolved over the past 6 months.   I have no desire to go back any time soon.

It is very likely that I won’t have anything further to say on this subject and it is likely there will never be another post on this blog.   Comments are open so feel free to say whatever is on your mind.   Nothing will be deleted unless it contains foul language.



For quite a few months now, SMAF has been administered in an ad-hoc way by Leo, Graham, and 5Points.  Leo is a founding member of SMAF, and has had more impact than anyone in making SMAF what it is today, including doing the vast bulk of the administration duties himself for months, establishing and maintaining the handicap system, designing the skins scoring spreadsheet, and creating this blog, as well as doing an incredible job of supporting golf in Chiang Rai in general (Canada Cup, The Tony Memorial, the Bernie Memorial, Chiang Mai – Chiang Rai competitions, etc. – the list goes on and on).  Last Monday, Leo announced his resignation from SMAF.  However, Leo has temporarily retained control of the SMAF Blog you are reading now.  He stated he intends to turn control of the blog over to Graham and 5Points next week, but not until he has a chance to draft and post one last blog post.  Leo has indicated his final post will explain in more detail the side-bet incident involving 5Points and one other SMAF participant, and describe how the actions of the SMAF participant reflects poorly on the SMAF participant and on anyone who condones the SMAF participant’s actions.  For the record, 5Points and Graham disagree with Leo on this point – we think it was one bad golf day for the SMAF participant that can be dismissed like the bad golf days we have all had – and an informal poll of other SMAF members closely corresponds with our views on the matter.  5Points and Graham consider Leo’s plan to use this SMAF blog (and the voice of Santiburi Members and Friends) to broadcast publicly his personal opinions to be grossly inappropriate.  5Points and Graham wish all readers of this blog to be aware that Leo’s blog post, when it is published, constitutes his opinion, and does not reflect the position of Santiburi Members and Friends – neither the remaining members of the ad-hoc administration nor the rest of the SMAF participants.  Apart from that, we wish Leo well and welcome him back to play with us any time.

We had 10 participants with us today:  8 members and two friends (Ae and Jockey John).  Darryl had to leave early, so he did not participate in the skins, and Jockey John elected to not participate as well —  however, Jockey John did shoot an excellent 40 points from the blue tees using his SMAF handicap, which would have been a winning score.  We played our normal skins game from the blue tees (Steve played from the white tees).  The course remains in great shape in the run-up to the pro tournament.  They have spread some sand on some of the fairways and aprons, and they were doing some aeration in the always persnickety 10th fairway under the trees.  The 11th and 12th greens have also received some sanding.

Perhaps because of the new handicaps which recently came out, the scoring was not as intense today.  Brian and Peter tied for the top Stableford prize, with 38 points each.  Brian got the closest prize on the third hole, and Bruce G took the prize on hole 7.  Ae knocked it stiff to 8 feet on Hole 12 to win, and edged Bruce G on Hole 17….  No, wait, Ae three-putted 17 from 42 feet, and his “Walk of Shame” left the prize to Bruce G (45 feet).

Here are the results:


  • Winner/Runner-Up (Tie):  Brian (38 Points) and Peter (38 Points)

Closest to the Pins:

  • Hole 3:  Brian
  • Hole 7:  Bruce G
  • Hole 12:  Ae
  • Hole 17:  Bruce G (Ae did the Walk of Shame)





















Bruce G






























Steve – W




Next Events:

Santiburi Members and Friends:

·         Saturday, March 10, 2018, 8:32 AM (please be at the course by 8:15 AM)

·         SMAF plays every Monday, Thursday, and Saturday at 8:30 AM.  Please be at  the course by 8:15 AM!

·         Save the Date:  Monday, March 26, 2018 — SMAF-Sponsored COMMUNITY CUP Tournament — The day after the Singha Masters Pro event concludes.  More details to come!

Chiang Rai Golfers:

·         Tuesday, March 13, Waterford, 8.30am

·         Thursday, March 15, Happy City, 8.30am (All-up price is 1400 baht, including compulsory single cart).