Originally Posted by luu5
Originally Posted by Fourputt
I've played a lot of matches over the years and I've never had a loss of hole penalty come into play on me or on my opponent.
I would say either you or your opponents are lying Of course I could be wrong
The act where you lose the hole does not have to deliberate cheating. As a real life example, I was playing a match and ended up in a deep green side bunker. It is at least 10 feet upwards to the green and my opponent on the green could not see me at all unless he was standing on the edge, which he was not. On the back swing I touched the sand very slightly and hit the balls on the green. Opponent congratulated me on my not so bad recovery shot. Then I told him that I had touched the sand, i.e. lost the hole.
I would imagine similar situations must have happened to people playing "more than once". Otherwise there would be "no" penalties in their stroke plays either.
My point is that the guys I've played matches with (club matches, not just casual golf) know the general on-course playing rules, and I know the relief procedures so that I can ensure that neither my opponent nor myself makes a bad drop. It really isn't hard to avoid those penalties with a little bit of care. If I'm in a situation where there might be a question, I call my opponent over to let him see what I'm doing and why before I take any action. And no, I don't incur such penalties in stroke play either. Such penalties generally occur when the player either doesn't know the rules, or he is trying to get more out of the shot than is reasonable or safe. Setting up with the clubhead too close to the ball in deep rough, causing the ball to move and then not replacing it is one of the most common 2 stroke mistakes made by casual players, and they almost never call it on themselves. It's mistakes like that which I simply don't make because I know the rules.
I never have to worry about touching the ground in a hazard (or bunker) because I hover the club, generally at least 1 or 2 inches away from the ball, and well off the surface that I'm not allowed to touch. I've played from precarious lies in the rough where you couldn't set up with the club less than 8 inches from the ball without the possibility of causing the ball to move. I simply don't take chances when I'm in those situations. I'd rather take the chance of a weak shot and still advance the ball than incur a 2 stroke penalty and still be in the same position, or worse, lose the hole and never know if I'd have made a good stroke or not.
I'm far from perfect. I hit OB. I hit into water hazards. I hit into unplayable lies. But I almost never incur a 2 stroke or loss of hole penalty for making a rules breach because I know the Rules of Golf and I know when to use caution and how to proceed in relief situations.