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paddymahon

Picking up my opponents ball

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During a game of stableford on the ninth hole I told my playing partners I was going ahead into the clubhouse to go to the toilet because I couldn't score and to save time. I picked up the wrong ball witness by two of the other players but not the one whose ball it was and proceeded .I was not marking that players ball.What is the ruling?

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Stableford is a form of stroke play. The ball is replaced and there is no penalty. Rule 18-4 pertains. Had you been a match play opponent, you would have incurred a penalty of one stroke.
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But I was in the rest room in the clubhouse with his ball in my pocket.

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But I was in the rest room in the clubhouse with his ball in my pocket.

Were you there all day? ;-) Under rule 1-4, in equity, I would allow the player to substitute another ball in place of the one you removed.

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