We'll give R&A Chief Martin Slumbers benefit of the doubt even as it's tempting to dig up four million links to stories about the Royal and Ancient Golf Club's steadfast refusal to let a woman enter their clubhouse, as recently as a couple of years ago.
But...Slumbers was not part of that world and he's too focused on golf's future to allow past blunders torpedo his desire to welcome more women to golf.
Alistair Tait praises Slumbers and explains the new R&A Charter:
“strengthen the focus on gender balance and provide a united position for the golf industry; commit national federations and organizations to support measures targeted at increasing participation of women girls and families in golf; call on signatories to take positive action to support the recruitment, retention and progression of women working at all levels of the sport; set individual targets for national federations for participation and membership and annual reporting of progress; and develop an inclusive environment for women and girls within golf.”
You can read the full charter story here.
The Englishman is to be commended for this initiative. British golf authorities have previously either done too little to encourage women to take up the game, or have merely paid lip service to the issue. It’s a sad indictment of the game that we still have clubs with no female members, or even junior members.
It’s hard to imagine how many women and girls have been turned off the game because of the chauvinistic attitudes embedded in golf’s status quo.