While it wasn't quite 'Gimmegate' levels, it all kicked off at the Presidents Cup. So should one of the most controversial aspects of match play – the dreaded concession – be condemned to golf's Room 101? George Cooper and Alex Perry disagree

Another match play event, another player unhappy at not being handed a gimme.

And though not quite as dramatic as that Solheim Cup incident all those years ago, the Presidents Cup did throw up an amusing incident in the lead singles match between Justin Thomas and Si Woo Kim…

Despite the head shaking, and having lost his singles match, JT eventually got over the incident as USA whooped Team International 17 ½ to 12 ½ at Quail Hollow.

But should gimmes now be banned altogether? Our ranting columnist, the Angry Club Golfer, has made his feelings quite known on the matter, we wanted to have our say. So here are two of our writers locking horns on the matter…

‘If it’s so easy just tap it in’

Get rid of them, writes George Cooper.

First there’s the lack of dignity. Seeing another birdie putt go astray just to scoop it up and put it in your pocket? No thanks, my game lends itself enough to self pity, so let me at least see the ball hit the hole!

There’s then time, and the over-perceived minutes saved by having gimmes. Erm, what about all the seconds lost from squabbling over those awkward three words – “Is this good?” No. Just tap it in.

If a putt is so unmissable, then why not just prove it and finish out? Eliminate all the drama and get on with the game the why it’s supposed to be played.

‘Gimmes are an important part of match play’

I absolutely despise the carry-on that goes with the gimme, writes Alex Perry. The awkward glance, the deliberately slow motion to your ball as you wait, the muttering under your breath, the passive aggressive placing of the putter between the ball and the hole. It all just feels so unnecessary to the point where I end up giving putts that I really shouldn’t to avoid it.

But ban gimmes? Hell no. You know the drill, so all together now: They’re an important tactic in the psychological battle of match play.

Give your opponent a handful of 18-inchers on the front-nine then make him finish a knee-knocker down the closing stretch. We’ve all been on both sides of this scenario down the years, so we know it works.

Take gimmes away from golf and you take away an important factor in one of its finest and funnest formats.

And in social golf? Well, they help speed up play.

They’re here to stay. Get over it.

George Cooper

A golf fanatic his entire life, George Cooper is NCG's man for all goings-on at the top level of the game, whether it's the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, LPGA or LIV Golf. He also looks after NCG's Twitter and Facebook accounts. George is a member of Woburn, but is not friends with Ian Poulter.

Handicap: 14

Alex Perry


Alex has been the editor of National Club Golfer since 2017. A Devonian who enjoys wittering on about his south west roots, Alex moved north to join NCG after more than a decade in London, the last five of which were with ESPN. Away from golf, Alex follows Torquay United and spends too much time playing his PlayStation or his guitar and not enough time practising his short game.

Handicap: 14

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