Rules..Rules..and More Rules……

4 - USGA

Yes, the Rules of Golf can be fun.  The Referee likes to spend evenings perusing through the Decisions on the Rules of Golf for the strange, interesting and sometimes funny facts.

Here’s the latest I like to refer to as:

Things just keep getting better …

Decision 13-2/0.5

Meaning of “Improve” in Rule 13-2

Q.Rule 13-2 prohibits a player from improving certain areas. What does “improve” mean?

Answer:

In the context of Rule 13-2, “improve” means to change for the better so that the player gains a potential advantage with respect to the position or lie of his ball, the area of his intended stance or swing, his line of play or a reasonable extension of that line beyond the hole, or the area in which he is to drop or place a ball. Therefore, merely changing an area protected by Rule 13-2 will not be a breach of Rule 13-2 unless it creates such a potential advantage for the player in his play.

Examples of changes that are unlikely to create such a potential advantage are if a player:

· repairs a small pitch-mark on his line of play five yards in front of his ball prior to making a 150-yard approach shot from through the green;

· accidentally knocks down several leaves from a tree in his area of intended swing with a practice swing, but there are still so many leaves or branches remaining that the area of intended swing has not been materially affected; or

· whose ball lies in thick rough 180 yards from the green, walks forward and pulls strands of grass on his line of play and tosses them in the air to determine the direction of the wind.

Examples of changes that are likely to create such a potential advantage are if a player:

· repairs a pitch-mark through the green five yards in front of his ball and on his line of play prior to making a stroke from off the putting green that might be affected by the pitch-mark (e.g., a putt or a low-running shot);

· accidentally knocks down a single leaf from a tree in his area of intended swing with a practice swing, but, as this was one of very few leaves that might either interfere with his swing or fall and thereby distract him, the area of intended swing has been materially affected; or

· pulls strands of grass from rough a few inches behind his ball to test the wind, but thereby reduces a potential distraction for the player, or resistance to his club, in the area of his intended swing.

The determination as to whether a player has gained a potential advantage from his actions is made by reference to the situation immediately prior to his stroke. If there is a reasonable possibility that the player’s action has created a potential advantage, the player is in breach of Rule 13-2.


Rules Rules Rules…I Just Saw It…

rulebookYes, the Rules of Golf can be fun.  The Referee likes to spend evenings perusing through the Decisions on the Rules of Golf for the strange, interesting and sometimes funny facts.

Here’s the latest I like to refer to as:

I only did it once, I swear…

 

Decision 13-4/9

Player Creates and Smoothes Footprints in Bunker Prior to Making Stroke

Q. A player’s ball lies in a bunker and a rake has been left in another part of the bunker. Prior to making his stroke in the bunker, the player retrieves the rake. Having lifted the rake, the player smoothes the footprints that he has just created, and some others in the process. What is the ruling?

Answer.

There is no penalty provided the smoothing was done for the sole purpose of caring for the course and nothing was done to breach Rule 13-2 in relation to the player’s next stroke (see Exception 2 to Rule 13-4).

If, however, a player is regularly creating and smoothing footprints close to his ball prior to making strokes from bunkers, it would be appropriate to question the player about the purpose of the smoothing. In such circumstances, the smoothing might be for the purpose of gaining knowledge of the condition of the bunker rather than being for the sole purpose of caring for the course. If so, the player would be in breach of Rule 13-4a for testing the condition of the hazard.


Rules of Golf Corner…I Just Saw It…..

Yes, the Rules of Golf can be fun.  The Referee likes to spend evenings perusing through the Decisions on the Rules of Golf for the strange, interesting and sometimes funny facts.

Here’s the latest I like to refer to as:

Now you see it; now you don’t…

12-1/3

Top of Ball in Hazard Covered by Leaves But Part of Ball Visible from Another Angle

Q. The top of the player’s ball in a hazard is covered by leaves so that it is not visible when he takes his stance However, a portion of the ball is visible from another angle. Is it permissible for the player to remove enough leaves to see the ball once he has taken his stance?

A. No. In these circumstances, a player is entitled to remove loose impediments covering a ball in a hazard only if the ball is not visible from any angle.


Rules of Golf Corner…I Just saw it….

Yes, the Rules of Golf can be fun.  The Referee likes to spend evenings perusing through the Decisions on the Rules of Golf for the strange, interesting and sometimes funny facts.

Here’s the latest I like to refer to as:

 

I Just saw it…

Decision 27/3

Time Permitted for Search When Lost Ball Found and Then Lost Again

Q. A player finds his ball in high rough after a two-minute search, leaves the area to get a club and, when he returns, is unable to nd the ball. Is he allowed three minutes or five minutes to nd his ball?

A. Three minutes.