Jakarta Inter-Society Matchplay League

Anthony King

Apr 18,2014

Jakarta Inter-Society Matchplay League

The longest running Matchplay competition in Jakarta kicked off the 2014 season in earnest in March at Jagorawi Golf & Country Club. The format has remained constant  over the decades with eight teams putting forwards eight players who compete with two singles and three better-ball matches.
Every team plays every other team and at the end of the season the team with the most points is declared the winner; with various scenarios of countback should two or more teams have the same number of points [as occurred in 2013].
Certainly there have been different teams competing and this year we see Cloggies [sort of hybrid Dutch team, Jakarta Loose Impediments – JLI [a distant offshoot from the US embassy], Mad Dogs [frequenters of one of the eating and drinking places in Cilandak], Pocksia [formerly a British regular Jakarta groups], Sandbaggers [ collectives of people who used to play Rawamungan ], Sentul Swingers [formerly Tee Set players and generally people who have made Sentul their home or work centre], Tee Set [the oldest playing group in Indonesia] and Tin Cups [a collection of players who have been coerced from other groups and follow the maxim of the film Tin Cup]

One of the most satisfying aspects is that the teams consist of players of all handicaps, nationalities and is open to both men and women – so a real golfing challenge in a convivial atmosphere. Each match handicap is taken as the difference of handicaps from the lowest handicapped player in the group and this together with captains strategic player selection and positioning definitely concentrates the mind during a matchplay event, especially for lower handicap players who have to give shots.

The JGCC has been home for the past few years and with a mini-shot gun start at 9:30 [allowing some recuperation time from the frivolities of the previous night] it does mean players have the opportunity to enjoy the day and still get back into Jakarta before the hordes from Puncak come charging down the toll.

Over the years teams have become more identifiable as they have tram shirts and some players go the extra yard by having complimentary trousers and hats – indeed those from LoudMouth should pay us a visit and see what Tanah Abang can produce!  Players usually are given ‘golf-names’ and these vary from the innocuous to the rather bawdy  which get printed in the league’s newsletter as well as being announced should any of them win one of the monthly skill prizes. This is the time when you really know who are your golfing buddies!

Tradition has it that the previous year’s winning and bottom teams play the opening match and this year there was a shock as Sandbaggers [winners] shared the points with JLI [last]. Interestingly this result could have changed had a clear understanding of golf rules been in evidence but then this is an element that can be found in most amateur ranks.
Tee Set were pipped to a 6:4 defeat by Mad Dogs whilst both Tin Cups and Cloggies beat their opponents 8:2 against Sentual Swingers and Pocksia respectively . Scores differ widely and this month there were two net 66 and one 67 but on the other end of the spectrum several players racked up the ‘ton+’ and many hit double figures on some holes.
Post golf is the bragging session where players gather  and exchange stories whilst having food and drink and the ‘lucky’ or skillful ones receive their awards.