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Most Broken Rule in Golf


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Hit 4 means that stroke coming up after dropping would be your 4th stroke? Sorry, I really am a rookie.

Drop a ball. You're laying three, and hitting four. We will assume your third shot, from the tee box, landed in a similar position. Sure, you could've topped it, or knocked it into a lake, or worse, but for pace of play, it's best to drop a ball and keep moving.

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I think there are two types of rules broken. Rules a player knows he is breaking, most common here has got to be the preferred lie in the rough. Most players know this is not allowed but do it an

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Right. All I'm asking is what do you guys do when this occurs. Forget provisional. I see the ball all the way through and can't find it once I get there. For example, if someone took the ball or it's hidden under leaves.

As someone else has already said, there's no such thing as "forget provisional." Rules are rules - they don't allow for "forget provisional because I didn't play one." If you want to play under the rules of golf, hit a provisional.

If you're just playing a practice round, drop a ball, add two shots, and move on. I agree it's not worth the pace of play. But you asked what the rules are, and I'm telling you what they are. There's absolutely no provision under the rules for dropping a ball near where you think you lost your other ball. You'd be disqualified for an egregious break in the rules, I believe, as soon as you tee off on the next tee (without correcting your mistake).
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But you asked what the rules are, and I'm telling you what they are. There's absolutely no provision under the rules for dropping a ball near where you think you lost your other ball. You'd be disqualified for an egregious break in the rules, I believe, as soon as you tee off on the next tee (without correcting your mistake).

Thanks for your help, j/o

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People drop balls wrong, also not declaring a provisional or declaring a ball 'Lost'

Dropping the ball incorrectly is a HUGE problem. I see this even from people who know the rules fairly well and play by them fairly well.

Another one that I haven't seen but does come up, is taking relief from a boundary fence.
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Dropping the ball incorrectly is a HUGE problem. I see this even from people who know the rules fairly well and play by them fairly well.

i'm unclear as to the rule for if your ball is lying right up against a fence. there aren't any OB markers or hazard markers and the ball is lying right up against the edge of the fence. what kind of relief is given and/or penalty for relief?

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i'm unclear as to the rule for if your ball is lying right up against a fence. there aren't any OB markers or hazard markers and the ball is lying right up against the edge of the fence. what kind of relief is given and/or penalty for relief?

None whatsoever... Rule 24-2 states that a player is entitled to free relief from an immovable obstruction. An out of bounds fence is clearly immovable; however, according to the definition of obstruction "An 'obstruction' is anything artificial, including the artificial surfaces and sides of roads and paths and manufactured ice, except: a. Objects defining out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings; b. Any part of an immovable artificial object that is out of bounds."

Hence you can either make a futile attempt to play your ball as it lies right up against the fence or you can declare it unplayable and drop it within 1 club length of where it no longer interferes with your swing & stance (if I'm not mistaken) with a 1 stroke penalty. Then again, if the fence weren't there to stop your ball you WOULD be OB and would have to take stroke-and-distance, so declaring unplayable lie and taking a 1 stroke penalty doesn't sound all that bad anymore. That would be one of my candidates for a rules change though BTW. I'll pick a new rule to change as soon as I stop sucking at golf and ending up next to those fences. I wouldn't change the scorecard rule that inspired this thread though (and I made the original comment in the other thread). It is a stupid rule but it only affects careless tournament players - a group to which I do not belong.
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I totally agree. It is the most penal rule in golf. It is so easy to lose a ball not too far off the fairway, not to mention OB stakes for no particular reason. We treat them as lateral hazards and play on with 1 stroke penalty. With some of the people I have played golf with, even provisional balls don't help when you have to take 5 provisionals.
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I totally agree. It is the most penal rule in golf. It is so easy to lose a ball not too far off the fairway, not to mention OB stakes for no particular reason. We treat them as lateral hazards and play on with 1 stroke penalty. With some of the people I have played golf with, even provisional balls don't help when you have to take 5 provisionals.

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None whatsoever... Rule 24-2 states that a player is entitled to free relief from an immovable obstruction. An out of bounds fence is clearly immovable; however, according to the definition of obstruction "An 'obstruction' is anything artificial, including the artificial surfaces and sides of roads and paths and manufactured ice, except: a. Objects defining out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings; b. Any part of an immovable artificial object that is out of bounds."

Close, but not quite right with regards to an unplayable lie. You have 3 options when you declare an unplayable:

If the player deems his ball to be unplayable, he must, under penalty of one stroke: (a) Play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played (see Rule 20-5); or (b) Drop a ball behind the point where the ball lay, keeping that point directly between the holeand the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how far behind that point the ball may be dropped; or (c) Drop a ball within two club-lengths of the spot where the ball lay, but not nearer the hole. You get 2 clubs lengths relief no nearer the hole, but you do not receive swing/stance relief. For example, if there is a slope next to the fence, and you take two club lengths relief and the ball rolls back against the fence when you drop, but stays in bounds and no nearer the hole (ie it is a proper drop) you do not get to redrop just because it is against the fence again. The same goes when using an unplayable for a bush for example, 2 club lengths may leave you within the bush. You have to take another unplayable from that point. Understanding when a redrop is required and not is something most people don't also understand. Everyone who plays seriously and tracks their handicap and plays by the "rules" should really take a rules class at some point. You will learn quite a bit about how the rules really work.
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Fun topic!

Golf Digest did a story last year or the year before where they had some experienced, rules official guys go "undercover," and play rounds with average golfers. Surreptitiously, they recorded all of the rules infractions.

The result was either horrifying or hysterically funny, depending on your viewpoint, but the number of rules broken was astonishing. And the vast majority were not flagrant things like kicking your ball out from behind a tree. Numerous errors involved incorrect drops, as someone alluded to above.

Another one I think of is failing to hole out, by just picking up short ones, or the close cousin, swiping at a short putt and missing, and writing down that you made the putt.

I know, conceding putts is allowed, but only in match play situations.

And of course, you can do whatever you want on the course, within reason...you only have to follow the rules if you are turning in a score for handicap purposes, or are otherwise in a competition. But if you want to take 6 mulligans, give yourself four 3-footers, kick your ball away from a tree, and 'roll it over' into a better lie, and then congratulate yourself for breaking 90 or 80 or whatever it is, by all means post this score, so when I play you I won't have to give you so many strokes.

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Close, but not quite right with regards to an unplayable lie. You have 3 options when you declare an unplayable:

I've read the thread quickly, so forgive me if I've missed something. But I think there's some confusion here--you guys are talking about two different rules. I'm no rules expert, but I think you both have your various rules correct. Yes, unplayable lie has certain rules for dropping, but the other rule referenced is an obstruction, from which you do get to go to the nearest place where you're not obstructed, no nearer the hole. Of course, there are specific caveats about what constitutes and obstruction (a bridge or a road usually is, an out of bounds post or fence usually isn't...), but there is a difference between an unplayable lie and an obstruction.

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I heard of a rule that you weren't allowed to putt with the pin in your arms, even if you were only making a 2 inch putt...

My understanding is this: If holding the flagstick "aids" you, you cannot do it. I think you'd be hard-pressed to find someone who would argue that holding the flagstick and hitting a putt in one-handed is "aiding" you.

There's another rule that says you can't stand astride the line of your putt... but a Decision that says you can reach across the hole to tap in a putt (and whether you're standing astride the line - or an extension of your line beyond the hole - is irrelevant). Same general idea: it's not done to gain any advantage.
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I was talking to my local pro about certain rulings and he posed a scenario which stumbled me somewhat.

Hypothetically of course, say you mishit your teeshot and then faced with a shot to the green with a glass window directly at your target. Instead of navigating the ball around the obstacle could I play the shot through the window?

Please forgive the improbableness of this actually happening
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Note: This thread is 5021 days old. We appreciate that you found this thread instead of starting a new one, but if you plan to post here please make sure it's still relevant. If not, please start a new topic. Thank you!

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