DISARRAY, disgruntlement, directionless? Scottish Golf doesn’t have its problems to seek. No sooner had a memo arrived yesterday confirming that the amateur governing body’s chief executive, Blane Dodds, had resigned after 16 months in the job, another press release dropped almost simultaneously from Tennis Scotland trumpeting the news that he had taken up a similar post with them.

Timing is everything is these ball games but for Scottish Golf, the timing of Dodds’ departure couldn’t be worse. In six weeks’ time, the game’s stakeholders will vote on proposals for a new strategy that was Dodds’ blueprint for a more financially vibrant future. That whole notion now appears dead in the water, or will at least be more watered down.

Dodds was the public front of a new drive to lure in more money after further cuts in government funding this year led to him making dire predictions that he’d have to make £400,000 worth of savings if other revenue streams couldn’t be sourced.

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The new strategy had many facets, but the most contentious was the proposed raising of the annual subscription fee members pay from £11.25 to £24 to help fund a unified customer management and tee-booking system.

The proposal to introduce a token annual fee of £10 to be levied on golfing tourists from abroad has hardly been cheered from the rooftops either. Dodds spent the summer on something of a charm offensive at a variety of club seminars but now it appears that Scottish Golf will be forced into a retreat.

The fact that Dodds has returned to his tennis roots is probably no great surprise. “It’s the one job I couldn’t turn down,” he said. Dodds was still performing a voluntary role as chairman of Tennis Scotland while in his Scottish Golf post and a cheery statement from the racket and ba’ side of things will no doubt stick in the craw of those in golf.

“There is a great team developing at Tennis Scotland and Blane has been very much a leading part of that over the last year and a half,” said David Mazzucco, the president of Tennis Scotland. When you’re performing a juggling act, something will clatter to the floor eventually.

The lure of tennis was referenced by Eleanor Cannon, the chair of Scottish Golf, in a statement released yesterday afternoon. “The timing of this decision is unfortunate, but we acknowledge Blane’s long association with tennis in Scotland and the emotional pull it has on a former internationalist,” she said.

Upon hearing that, people will, quite rightly, be questioning those who appointed Dodds in the first instance.

Those left to pick up the pieces have stressed that they will plough on with the strategy and continue to confer with clubs and members ahead of the December vote.

“The Board of Scottish Golf remains unanimously committed to its core strategic objective,” said Cannon.

“We will continue to engage with and listen carefully to golfers and clubs over the coming weeks, to underline our belief that by making a relatively small personal investment in the game, golfers can help strengthen the foundations of this great sport and better serve future generations of golfers and visitors to Scotland.”

“We acknowledge the concerns of some people and clubs around the detail of our proposals and will obviously reflect carefully on all of the views we are hearing prior to finalising what goes to the SGM by the start of November.

“Our desire is to continue to consult and build as much consensus as we can around the future of golf in Scotland.”

Perhaps they could give Gordon Strachan a ring? He’ll probably be spending plenty of a time on a golf course, after all.