Hurrah it’s Rules time! (Hilary)

Just to change it up the golf quiz this time I’ll give you some scenarios that happened lately on our course. I’ll never tell who did these…………………

1. You tee off on Hole #2 and your ball goes to the right. The ball hits the tree on the right hand side near the end of the lake. It bounces off one of the branches and goes to the left, sideways into the water. What are your options for your next shot?

The water in front of the #2 tee box is a water hazard as it has YELLOW stakes. You have three options.

1. Play it where it lies in the lake, rats didn’t you bring your bikini today?

2. Hit from the tee box again.

3. Drop a ball, but the tricky thing is ………………….where do you drop?

You CANNOT walk into the grass alongside the water and drop your ball where the grass looks good. Also you cannot just drop your ball two club lengths from where it went in as it is NOT a red staked lateral hazard.

As it’s a YELLOW staked hazard your last option is to drop the ball in a line behind where the ball crossed the hazard and IN LINE WITH THE PIN.

The line for the drop is “The pin being furthest away, then along that line where the ball last crossed the hazard, and then your ball that you drop as far back as you like.” Your line/angle for your drop depends on where the pin is located that day.

Kinda tricky especially as you might find yourself backed into that tree!

2. Hole #8. Your great drive bounces to the right into the rough at the 100 yard marker. You iron shot to the green flies left into the water along the fairway. You drop a ball close to where your ball went in and play to the green. You take a one stroke penalty, is this correct?

The water hazard here is marked with YELLOW stakes. You must be sure that you drop your ball at a place that is ON LINE A WITH THE PIN AND WHERE YOUR BALL CROSSED THE HAZARD.
If you just dropped it anywhere you may have played from a WRONG PLACE and it’s a further two stroke penalty. I know many of us are guilty of this breach on Hole #8.

Be careful and drop your ball in the correct place.

3. You are on Hole #9 and you have a great drive. For your second shot you grab your favorite fairway wood and aim for the green but you think that your ball slices towards the water. As you walk down the fairway you can’t see your ball anywhere. You decide that it must have gone in the water so you drop a ball within two club lengths from the lateral hazard markers where you think it went in. You hole out and add one penalty stroke to your score. As you walk off the green you see your pesky original ball lying in the rough.

What are your options, and should you add any more penalty strokes to your score or is one enough?

The bottom line is that you should not have dropped your ball at the red stakes of the lateral hazard as you were not VIRTUALLY CERTAIN or KNEW that you ball had entered the hazard.

When you couldn’t find your ball you should have used Rule 27 Lost Ball. Under this Rule you would have gone back to where you last hit the ball and dropped another ball, incurring a ONE stroke penalty.

As you did not do this you dropped your ball in a WRONG place and under Rule 20-7 you incurred a further TWO STROKES as penalty. Therefore, as you finished out Hole #9 you should add THREE Strokes to your score.

If you are in competition the Committee could even disqualify you for serious breach of a Rule. Ouch, that hurts!

So never use Rule 26 unless you know for sure that your ball is in a water hazard or lateral water hazard. If you’re not certain and cannot find you ball within 5 minutes use Rule 27, Lost ball. This way you’ll only pay ONE STROKE even if you find your ball later.

4. You are on Hole #17 and your ball lands in the front greenside bunker. Whew you’re feeling lucky as you didn’t go in the water again eh? Sad to say you’re feeling too good too soon. Your shot from the bunker comes out “HOT” and goes over the wood pilings into the lake. Rats! The water hazard is lined with YELLOW stakes

What are your options for your next shot?

No bikini again eh so you can’t play it as it lies. Your options, under penalty of one stroke, are………………

1. Drop a ball behind the water keeping the point where the ball crossed the margin between the hole and the place where you drop the ball.

Oh no, that would have you either standing in the lake, or way, way back in the 18th fairway on other side of the lake. That’s not a good plan.

2. Your only good option is to drop the ball in the bunker where your first shot came to rest and try again, more gently. Isn’t golf fun?

I hope this helps you.



Honor that which is sacred and equal within us all.


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