The England Golf order of merit schedules for 2017 are underway, with Josh McMahon and Annabel Bailey setting the very early pace.
McMahon, from Wallasey in Cheshire, and Bailey from Kirby Muxloe in Leicestershire, had the distinction of topping the first tables of the season, which were compiled after the Portuguese amateur championship.
But there’s a long way to go to, with a total of 27 events on the women’s schedule and 29 for the men. There are also order of merit tables for girls, senior women, boys and senior men.
For the first time this year the tables will be used alongside the World Amateur Golf Rankings (WAGR) for some selections for the men’s and women’s European Team Championships and the Home Internationals.
Both European teams will include the top two players on the WAGR and the top player on the order of merit. The selection committees will pick a further three players for each team, using the tables as guidelines, alongside other ranking systems and performance information.
The women’s Home Internationals team will include the top two players from both the WAGR and the order of merit, with a further three players chosen by the selection committee.
The men’s Home Internationals team will include the top three players from both the WAGR and the order of merit, with a further five players chosen by the selection committee.
The senior tables will also continue to be used for team selection, following a system which has proved successful over recent years. The senior men and senior women’s teams will both include the top four players on the order of merit for the European Team Championships and the top five players for the Home Internationals. The remaining places on each team will be decided by selection committees.
The senior men’s order of merit schedule has been expanded for 2017 and now includes 15 events.
The orders of merit are also taken into account when selecting the England boys’ and girls’ teams, alongside a range of other ranking and performance information.
The 2016 order of merit winners were:
Men – Scott Gregory, Corhampton Golf Club, Hampshire (image copyright Leaderboard Photography)
Senior Men – Stephen East, Leeds Golf Centre (Wike Ridge Golf Club), Yorkshire
Boys – Charlie Thornton, Fulford Golf Club, Yorkshire
Women – Sophie Lamb, Clitheroe Golf Club, Lancashire
Senior Women – Cath Rawthore, Sale Golf Club, Cheshire
Girls – Emily Price, Cleobury Mortimer Golf Club, Worcestershire
Past winners include Charley Hull, Tommy Fleetwood and Chris Wood.