English Golfers Shoot Five Over Handicap On Average In Return To Golf

Data from Shot Scope illustrates that golfers in England were a little rusty on their return to the sport

English Golfers Shoot Five Over Handicap On Average In Return To Golf
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Data from Shot Scope illustrates that golfers in England were a little rusty on their return to the sport

English Golfers Shoot Five Over Handicap On Average In Return To Golf

Golfers in England returned to the fairways on Monday 29th March after 12 weeks without the game due to Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

And new data shows that, unsurprisingly, we were a little bit rusty.

The average score came in at +21.71, compared to an average of +14.35 last year, according to data from Shot Scope.

This was, on average, +5.23 over handicap.

Shot Scope recorded more than 446,000 shots on the return to golf as restrictions eased; a figure that represents its largest amount of tracked shots on a single day in England.

This correlated to 4,788 rounds played in the country, eclipsing the previous daily record by over 2,500, while a Shot Scope watch was used to track performance at over 75% of courses.

Shot Scope was also able to see that just 30% of users found the fairway with their opening tee shot, down 18% on average, and 39% of players missed the fairway to the right.

A huge 94% of Shot Scope users, who opened on a par 4 or 5, hit their opening shot with a driver.

Related: The best drivers 2021

The majority of users struggled more than usual off the tee but it was on the greens where the biggest dip in performance came according to new strokes gained data.

Golfers lost over 40% more shots due to poor putting performance against the Shot Scope average for 2020, with strokes gained putting against a scratch golfer dropping from an average of -3.52 to -5.08.

The numbers did show, however, that golfers were getting back into the swing of things by the back nine, with scoring dropping by 4.03 on the inward half.

Related: Shot Scope V3 GPS Watch Review

“With the systems we have in place, our team were able to quickly extract the data to provide a snapshot of what the first day back on the course looked like for Shot Scope users throughout the country," commented Shot Scope CEO, David Hunter.

"The stats made for some very interesting reading."

Stats: Shot Scope
Elliott Heath
Elliott Heath

Elliott Heath is our Senior Staff Writer and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016. He graduated in Sports Journalism in 2016 and currently manages the Golf Monthly news, courses and travel sections as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. Elliott has interviewed some huge names in the golf world including Sergio Garcia, Thomas Bjorn, Bernd Wiesberger and Scotty Cameron as well as a number of professionals on the DP World and PGA Tours. He has also covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as three Open Championships including at Carnoustie in 2018 when he was inside the ropes with Tiger Woods. He has played 31 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Old Head and Alwoodley. He currently plays at West Byfleet Golf Club in Surrey, where his handicap index floats anywhere between 4-6. His golfing highlight is making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, and he has made one hole-in-one.


Elliott is currently playing:


Driver: Honma TR20

3 wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Max

Hybrid: TaylorMade SIM Max

Irons: Honma TR20B

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x