Having recently attended the Decisions meeting at Lake Merced Country Club I wanted to update you on changes that will affect our play in 2010.
RULE CHANGES. There was only one.
This change will definitely NOT impact our play as it is only in use in “Competitions involving the highest level of expert play.”
Prior to 2010 the majority of golfers were using square or U grooves. This was beneficial for high caliber players as it allowed them to put an abundance of spin on their golf ball, especially out of the rough because of the sharp, deep grooves. The square grooves on wedges particularly were making it so that hitting a ball out of the rough was not a penal as it was intended to be. Hence the change. There is no need to change the irons you have in your bag unless you are heading to the LPGA tour.
DECISIONS. There are 28 new Decisions and over 50 Revised Decisions. The 4 below are important for us to know.
16-1a/ 9 Brushing loose impediments off the line of putt with palm of hand.
As long as you DO NOT press anything down, or test the surface of the green, you may “Use the whole palm of your hand, and use about a dozen strokes, to remove loose impediments which are difficult to remove from your line of putt.
27-2a/1.3 Announcement of Provisional ball.
If you want to put a Provisional ball in to play but your fellow competitors are far from you and unable to hear your “announcement” of a provisional ball you may now put a ball into play. However you must inform them of your action as soon as possible. This way play is not unnecessarily delayed.
14-3/16 Artificial Devices.
This is for all you “high tech” golfers who may use their iPhones on the course.
The application that has the distance measuring system MUST have the COMPASS part of its program removed. The iPhone, or any similar device must not be used to:
1. Access weather conditions that effect play, such as wind direction/speed/ or gradient of the course.
2. To call to ask for golf advice in breach of rule 8-1.
If you’ve managed to read through this far here’s a funny Revised Decision to end on.
23/ 6.5. Status of snake.
A live snake has always been an “Outside Agency” but now it defines that a DEAD snake is both an “Outside Agency and a Loose Impediment” This has been expanded to clarify that an item can fall under more than one Definition.
I’d prefer the Loose Impediment snake any day!
I hope this helps you.