With our handicap tournament coming up fast I would like to share with you a few misconceptions with the Rules that can get you into trouble.
The consequences can range from a two stroke penalty to the dreaded two letter word, DQ. Disqualification.
I’m making them brief so you’ll read them, but if you want to know any of the Rule numbers/decisions let me know.
I’m sure most of you know these but …………….just in case.
Know this rule for the water on hole #9 and the lake near that pesky willow tree on hole #10 or you could be out of the game.
You cannot declare you are hitting a “provisional ball” if you think your ball went into a water hazard.
You can play another ball ONLY if you see your ball go into a water hazard.
You cannot assume your ball went into a hazard just because there is a possibility it did.
If you don’t see it you can’t do it!
If you hit another ball calling it a “provisional” and then you find your original ball lies out of the hazard and you play it you have broken two rules and incur a three stroke penalty.
If you continue with your second ball it’s still three stroke penalty.
If you get a significant advantage in either example you will be disqualified.
Remember this on hole #14 when your ball goes out of the fence onto the road or rests up against the fence. You don’t want to be DQd and out of the tournament.
If your ball goes out of bounds you cannot go to where it went ob and drop a ball, if you do you can be disqualified, you are only allowed to play a ball from where your last stroke was made.
If your ball lands next to an OB fence or a white OB stake you cannot get relief as these are NOT defined as obstructions. If you do you will get a two stroke penalty.
Your options are to hit it where it lies, or take an unplayable lie.
Remember last month I wrote about “Nearest Point of Relief”? Well you must be sure that when you take relief, say from a cart path, you get FULL relief.
If your feet are even slightly on the path it’s a two stroke penalty for playing from a wrong place. It’s easy to do, but the penalty is huge.
My last reminder is one I’m sure you’ve all seen.
One of your fellow competitors marks their ball on the green and when they replace it they put ahead of their marker. “What’s a half an inch?” they say “It looks okay to me.” I know we all wish we were closer to the hole but any tiny distance comes with a big two stroke penalty. Mark your ball and put it back exactly where it was before you lifted it.
If you do it a number of times during your round it’s disqualification for you under Rule 33-7/6.
Don’t be out of the tournament because you didn’t know the Rules.
I hope this helps you, and good wishes for great play in the tournament.