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"There have been times when I've seen women who are playing golf in their photos, and I've right-swiped even though I'd never consider right-swiping otherwise," he says.

After mindlessly left-swiping through hundreds of mundane Tinder images (a left-swipe means, "Nope, I'm not interested"), I stopped at a photo of a guy standing on the seventh tee at Pebble Beach. I messaged him first: "Seventh tee at Pebble Beach!"It's a more realistic expectation for women to find male golfers than it is for men to find female golfers."Ryan, a 33-year-old avid golfer and a divorced father of two girls, says it's his dream to find a woman who loves the game and plays well."Half my time is already devoted to my daughters," he says, "and golf takes up the majority of the rest of my free time." When Ryan reentered the dating scene, he used Tinder.She considered only guys who made mention of the sport, whether it was through a photo they'd posted or a reference in their short bio.On a cold day in February, she came across a guy with whom she'd flirted at Chelsea Piers in December.Elizabeth and her man have now been dating for nearly three years.

Turns out she was the first and only person he ever messaged.

He just really likes that he can talk to me about it."This sentiment is common among golfers who date other golfers.

One woman in her late 20s, whom we'll call Elizabeth, got stood up on New Year's Eve in 2010.

She turned to to find a serious relationship, making up a whimsical user name that contained the word "golf." Many men were immediately interested.

"The first messages I got were always about golf," she says. Most women just say, ' Yeah, I love to eat and drink and have fun.' So golf really sets you apart."After using Match for several months and going on more than a dozen golf dates, Elizabeth was growing increasingly unenthused with the online-dating scene. Four days later, he sent a follow-up email with the subject line, "Taking a Mulligan." In more than 400 words, he explained why they should either "hit balls at Chelsea Piers" or play at a private course he'd recently joined. "I got into a total stranger's car, which in hindsight probably wasn't the smartest idea, but it was a full day of getting to know each other, and it didn't feel forced," Elizabeth says. Golf is such a nice launch pad for getting to know someone."Though a four-hour first date might seem daunting, it can be far less awkward than a typical first date.

Golf, the only apparent thing we had in common, compelled us to transition from exchanging messages on a mobile-only dating app to clinking beers in real life.