Rules of GolfRules of Golf

The Rules of Golf are there to guide you, whatever situation you find yourself in.

You will get much more from the game if you know how to apply them correctly.

Before teeing of on your round it is the players responsibility to check the local rules boar that will display any temporary local rules as deemed necessary from time to time for the day.

An example of this could be “ground under repair” and this will be defined by a white mark around it and you are entitled to free drop so as not to damage the area.

The local rules board is often located outside the professional golf shop or where greenfees are usually paid.

Also check out the club’s local rules which are to be found on the back of the scorecard.

Q A player can not take his stance properly on the tee because one of the tee markers obstructs his left foot. He moves the tee marker a couple of inches and plays his stroke. There is no penalty.

A Rule 13.2 - A player shall not improve or allow to be improved:

1.The position or lie of the ball

2.The area of his intended swing

3.His line of play

Penalty Stroke play – Two strokes

Q Player “A” putts and strike the left foot of player “B” who is attending the flagstick. Player B incurs a two stroke penalty.

A Rule 17.3 - The player’s ball shall not strike:

1.The flagstick when attended or removed by the player, his partner or either of their caddies, or by another person with the player'

2.The player’s caddie, his partner or his partner’s caddie when attending the flagstick, or another person attending the flagstick.

3.The flagstick in the hole, unattended, when the ball has been played from the putting green.

Penalty Stroke play - Two strokes

Q During a round a player must not give advice to anyone in the competition except his partner.

A Rule 8.1 – Advice.

A player may give advice to, or ask for advice from, only his partner or either of their caddies

Penalty Stroke play – Two strokes

Q A player may stand on his golf buggy in order to play a shot that is up in a tree.

A Rule 13.3 – Ball played as it lies - Building stance

A player is entitled to place his feet firmly in taking a stance, but shall not build a stance.

Penalty Stroke play – Two strokes

Q A player’s ball is situated in deep rough. The player may move the grass around the ball so that he can play his shot.

A Rule 13.2 – Improving lie, area of intended line of flight.

A player shall not improve or allow to be improved:

1.The position or lie of his ball.

2.The area of his intended swing.

3.His line of play

By any of the following actions

1.Moving, bending or breaking anything growing or fixed (including objects defining out of bounds).

2.Removing or pressing down sand, loose soil, replaced divots, other cut turf placed in position or other irregularities of surface.

Penalty Stroke play – Two strokes

Q A player putts from 10 feet and his ball comes to rest on the edge of the hole. The player watches his ball for some 20 seconds before he walks slowly to his ball. His ball falls into the hole 10 seconds after he arrives at the side of the hole. There is no penalty.

A Rule 16.1h – Ball overhanging hole

When any part of the ball overhanging the edge of the hole, the player is allow enough time to reach the hole without unreasonable delay and an additional 10 seconds to determine whether the ball is at rest. If by then the ball has not fallen into the hole, it is deemed to be at rest.

Penalty Stroke play – Two strokes

Q A player may deem his ball unplayable at any place on the course except when the ball is in a water hazard.

A Rule 28 – Ball Unplayable

At any place on the course except in a water hazard a player may declare his ball unplayable. The player is the sole judge as to whether his ball is unplayable.

If a player deems his ball unplayable he shall:

1.Play his next stroke as near as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played or moved by himself.

2.Drop a ball within two club-lengths of the spot where the ball lay, but not nearer the hole.

3.Drop a ball behind the spot where the ball lay, keeping the spot directly between himself and the hole, with no limit to how far behind the spot the ball may be dropped.

4.If the unplayable ball lies in a bunker and the player elects to proceed under no.’s 2and 3 above, a ball must be dropped in the bunker.

Q A player standing on the third hole hits his ball over the boundary fence marked with out of bounds. Can he play his next shot without penalty?

A Rule 27.1 – Ball lost or out of bounds

If a ball is lost outside a water hazard or is out of bounds, the player shall play a ball under penalty of one stroke. As near as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played or moved by him.

Q In stroke play on the final green player “A” putts his ball to one inch from the hole and his fellow competitor knocks the ball away from the hole and says “that’s good enough”. The players leave the putting green and go to the clubhouse to return their cards. Player “A” is disqualified.

A Rule 3.2 – Failure to hole out.

If a competitor fails to hole out at any hole he has played a stroke from the next teeing ground or in the case of the last hole of the round, before he has left the putting green, he shall be disqualified. 

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