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Golfingdad

What Constitutes Finding Your Ball

44 posts in this topic

As happens so often, situations arise while I'm playing that cause me to wonder "what if this happened, how would I handle it?"  And since the answer is usually, "I have no idea," I turn to you guys.

The scenario:  On a par 3, I yanked my tee shot left into some heavy brush.  It didn't appear to be marked as a hazard, and as it was quite likely the ball was gone.  So I played a provisional, which I hit OK, leaving myself a putt for bogey.  When I got to the green, I made a cursory effort to find the ball, basically looking in the grass just outside of the brush hoping it trickled out and I'd be able to play it without a penalty.  Once I realized that it wasn't on the grass, I gave up looking.  Now, while on the green, watching others putt and waiting for my turn - and still within the 5 minute search period - I am standing there leaning against my putter and enjoying the scenery.  I'm just glancing around at the view, and I turn towards where I had been looking for my ball and it dawns on me ... what if I see a ball in the brush up there, or what looks like a ball?  Am I required to go and try to identify it?

If I was required to go identify it, and it was mine, then I'd have to abandon the provisional and either take an unplayable drop somewhere over there, or go re-tee again.  Neither of those scenarios appealed to me so I decided to avoid looking in that direction until the hole was over. :)

----------------------

A slightly un-related question, but I think this one just has a yes or no answer and doesn't really deserve its own thread so ...

I hit a drive into heavy brush (this is a recurring theme with me :)) and I don't think it's a hazard, so I play a provisional from the tee.  I declared it as a provisional specifically because I thought that was not a hazard.  Well, it turns out that I was wrong, and it was, in fact, a hazard.  We determined that since the ball was definitely in a hazard and not OB, then the provisional had to be abandoned and, thus, I proceeded as normal for a lateral hazard, dropping at the point of entry.  Was that the correct procedure?  Or is there some punishment required for playing a provisional for a ball that was in a hazard?

Thanks guys!!!

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Originally Posted by Golfingdad

As happens so often, situations arise while I'm playing that cuase me to wonder "what if this happened, how would I handle it?"  And since the answer is usually, "I have no idea," I turn to you guys.

The scenario:  On a par 3, I yanked my tee shot left into some heavy brush.  It didn't appear to be marked as a hazard, and as it was quite likely the ball was gone.  So I played a provisional, which I hit OK, leaving myself a putt for bogey.  When I got to the green, I made a cursory effort to find the ball, basically looking in the grass just outside of the brush hoping it trickled out and I'd be able to play it without a penalty.  Once I realized that it wasn't on the grass, I gave up looking.  Now, while on the green, watching others putt and waiting for my turn - and still within the 5 minute search period - I am standing there leaning against my putter and enjoying the scenery.  I'm just glancing around at the view, and I turn towards where I had been looking for my ball and it dawns on me ... what if I see a ball in the brush up there, or what looks like a ball?  Am I required to go and try to identify it?

If I was required to go identify it, and it was mine, then I'd have to abandon the provisional and either take an unplayable drop somewhere over there, or go re-tee again.  Neither of those scenarios appealed to me so I decided to avoid looking in that direction until the hole was over. :)

----------------------

A slightly un-related question, but I think this one just has a yes or no answer and doesn't really deserve its own thread so ...

I hit a drive into heavy brush (this is a recurring theme with me :)) and I don't think it's a hazard, so I play a provisional from the tee.  I declared it as a provisional specifically because I thought that was not a hazard.  Well, it turns out that I was wrong, and it was, in fact, a hazard.  We determined that since the ball was definitely in a hazard and not OB, then the provisional had to be abandoned and, thus, I proceeded as normal for a lateral hazard, dropping at the point of entry.  Was that the correct procedure?  Or is there some punishment required for playing a provisional for a ball that was in a hazard?

Thanks guys!!!

I don't know the answers but I'm happy to give you my best guesses while we wait for qualified assistance.

Part 1 - I believe that if you were to see a ball or what appears to be a ball and it is still within the 5 minute allotment, then hono(u)r should require you to investigate. So don't look over there anymore!

Part 2 - I believe that once it was established that the ball was in fact in the hazard and not OB the provisional would be considered to have never happened.

Looking forward to learning the real answers, I really enjoy learning the nuances of the rules.

By the way, that's not how you spell cause.

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Originally Posted by Ernest Jones

I don't know the answers but I'm happy to give you my best guesses while we wait for qualified assistance.

Part 1 - I believe that if you were to see a ball or what appears to be a ball and it is still within the 5 minute allotment, then hono(u)r should require you to investigate. So don't look over there anymore!

Part 2 - I believe that once it was established that the ball was in fact in the hazard and not OB the provisional would be considered to have never happened.

Looking forward to learning the real answers, I really enjoy learning the nuances of the rules.

By the way, that's not how you spell cause.

I agree with you on both ... those were my guesses as well.  We'll see though. :)

Whoops ... I edited it though. ;)  So now it just looks like you doctored it in your reply to make it appear as though I spelled it wrong.

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Originally Posted by Golfingdad

As happens so often, situations arise while I'm playing that cause me to wonder "what if this happened, how would I handle it?"  And since the answer is usually, "I have no idea," I turn to you guys.

The scenario:  On a par 3, I yanked my tee shot left into some heavy brush.  It didn't appear to be marked as a hazard, and as it was quite likely the ball was gone.  So I played a provisional, which I hit OK, leaving myself a putt for bogey.  When I got to the green, I made a cursory effort to find the ball, basically looking in the grass just outside of the brush hoping it trickled out and I'd be able to play it without a penalty.  Once I realized that it wasn't on the grass, I gave up looking.  Now, while on the green, watching others putt and waiting for my turn - and still within the 5 minute search period - I am standing there leaning against my putter and enjoying the scenery.  I'm just glancing around at the view, and I turn towards where I had been looking for my ball and it dawns on me ... what if I see a ball in the brush up there, or what looks like a ball?  Am I required to go and try to identify it?

If I was required to go identify it, and it was mine, then I'd have to abandon the provisional and either take an unplayable drop somewhere over there, or go re-tee again.  Neither of those scenarios appealed to me so I decided to avoid looking in that direction until the hole was over. :)

----------------------

A slightly un-related question, but I think this one just has a yes or no answer and doesn't really deserve its own thread so ...

I hit a drive into heavy brush (this is a recurring theme with me :)) and I don't think it's a hazard, so I play a provisional from the tee.  I declared it as a provisional specifically because I thought that was not a hazard.  Well, it turns out that I was wrong, and it was, in fact, a hazard.  We determined that since the ball was definitely in a hazard and not OB, then the provisional had to be abandoned and, thus, I proceeded as normal for a lateral hazard, dropping at the point of entry.  Was that the correct procedure?  Or is there some punishment required for playing a provisional for a ball that was in a hazard?

Thanks guys!!!


I did a bit of googling on part two and found this :

You may NOT hit a provisional if the ONLY place the ball could be lost is in a water hazard.

If you violate these restrictions, the ball is not a provisional. It becomes your ball in play and the original may not be played.

This is part of rule 27-2

Many golfers think they cannot hit a provisional if their original ball might be in a water hazard. But they may play a provisional ball in such circumstances as long as their original might instead be lost nearby, outside of the water hazard. When you get to the area, if you determine your original is in the hazard, you must abandon the provisional and use the water-hazard rule (Rule 26) for any relief.

and this.....

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Originally Posted by Golfingdad

I agree with you on both ... those were my guesses as well.  We'll see though. :)

Whoops ... I edited it though. ;)  So now it just looks like you doctored it in your reply to make it appear as though I spelled it wrong.

Yeah accept your original post is time stamped with your edit.

Besides you also spelled caught wrong, see below for undeniable and admissable evidence.

Originally Posted by Golfingdad

As happens so often when I'm looking for new ways to cheat, situations arise while I'm playing that cause me to wonder "what if I get cuaght, how would I handle it?"  And since the answer is usually, "I have no idea," I turn to you guys.

The scenario:  On a par 3, I yanked my tee shot left into some heavy brush.  It didn't appear to be marked as a hazard, and as it was quite likely the ball was gone.  So I played a provisional, which I hit OK, leaving myself a putt for bogey.  When I got to the green, I made a cursory effort to find the ball, basically looking in the grass just outside of the brush hoping it trickled out and I'd be able to play it without a penalty.  Once I realized that it wasn't on the grass, I gave up looking.  Now, while on the green, watching others putt and waiting for my turn - and still within the 5 minute search period - I am standing there leaning against my putter and enjoying the scenery.  I'm just glancing around at the view, and I turn towards where I had been looking for my ball and it dawns on me ... what if I see a ball in the brush up there, or what looks like a ball?  Am I required to go and try to identify it?

If I was required to go identify it, and it was mine, then I'd have to abandon the provisional and either take an unplayable drop somewhere over there, or go re-tee again.  Neither of those scenarios appealed to me so I decided to avoid looking in that direction until the hole was over. :)

----------------------

A slightly un-related question, but I think this one just has a yes or no answer and doesn't really deserve its own thread so ...

I hit a drive into heavy brush (this is a recurring theme with me :)) and I don't think it's a hazard, so I play a provisional from the tee.  I declared it as a provisional specifically because I thought that was not a hazard.  Well, it turns out that I was wrong, and it was, in fact, a hazard.  We determined that since the ball was definitely in a hazard and not OB, then the provisional had to be abandoned and, thus, I proceeded as normal for a lateral hazard, dropping at the point of entry.  Was that the correct procedure?  Or is there some punishment required for playing a provisional for a ball that was in a hazard?

Thanks guys!!!

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Originally Posted by Ernest Jones

Yeah accept your original post is time stamped with your edit.

Besides you also spelled caught wrong, see below for undeniable and admissable evidence.

LOL!  Well played sir.  (At least I spelled "cheat" correctly)

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The second one is easy.  You were not aware there was a hazard.  You thought your ball was lost outside a hazard  so you correctly played a provisional.  Once you found out your ball was in the hazard, you need known virtual certainty that it was, you may proceed under the water hazard rule and abandon your provisional.

As far as the first IMO, if a ball is found it must be identified by the player, I think that would apply in your case if you saw a ball. If you saw a ball that could be your original, you're within 5 minutes from starting a search, and you have not done anything else to make your original lost ( ie. play your provisional from a point where the original might be lost) you need to identify it.

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Quote:
If the original ball is neither lost nor out of bounds , the player must abandon the provisional ball and continue playing the original ball. If it is known or virtually certain that the original ball is in a water hazard , the player may proceed in accordance with Rule 26-1 . In either situation, if the player makes any further strokes at the provisional ball , he is playing a wrong ball and the provisions of Rule 15-3 apply.

I am not sure you have to go find your ball. I think you can deem it lost, and that's it. BUT I think i would be obligated to do so. But hey, you never know. you find the ball, take a unplayable lie, drop it out of the high stuff, chip it closer for an easier bogey putt ;

As for the driver hit, if it ended up in a hazard, disregard the provisional and play the first ball as it is a hazard.

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You can not declare a ball lost.  A ball is deemed lost for the these 5 reasons.  If you want it to be lost,  I would not look for it, and do (b) below as quickly as you can.

Lost Ball

A ball is deemed “ lost ” if:

a. It is not found or identified as his by the player within five minutes after the player’s side or his or their caddies have begun to search for it; or

b. The player has made a stroke at a provisional ball from the place where the original ball is likely to be or from a point nearer the hole than that place (see Rule 27-2b ); or

c. The player has put another ball into play under penalty of stroke and distance under Rule 26-1a , 27-1 or 28a ; or

d. The player has put another ball into play because it is known or virtually certain that the ball, which has not been found, has been moved by an outside agency (see Rule 18-1 ), is in an obstruction (see Rule 24-3 ), is in an abnormal ground condition (see Rule 25-1c ) or is in a water hazard (see Rule 26-1b or c ); or

e. The player has made a stroke at a substituted ball .

Time spent in playing a wrong ball is not counted in the five-minute period allowed for search.

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Dormie has pretty much hit the nail on the head.  The player can only declare the ball unplayable.  To be lost it must meet the definition of lost in the rules as posted by Dormie.

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Sure you can Its called stop looking for the ball. Basically unless an opponent wants to keep looking for a lost ball, you can just go hit your provisional ball with out waiting 5 minutes. So you have a choice, you don't have to look the entire 5 minutes.

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Originally Posted by saevel25

Sure you can Its called stop looking for the ball. Basically unless an opponent wants to keep looking for a lost ball, you can just go hit your provisional ball with out waiting 5 minutes. So you have a choice, you don't have to look the entire 5 minutes.

I think we're on the same page.  What you describe is item B in my last post.  The only caveat is the provisional, when played, must be where the original is thought to be lost or closer to the hole than that point.  A popped up provisional, for example, can be hit a second time and still not necessarily become the ball in play.

The point is your original is lost only after certain actions on your part, an unsuccessful 5 minute search being one of them.  There are no "verbal actions" or announcements that a player can make that deem their ball lost.

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Question that feeds off of the lost ball rule.  I was playing in a tournament at Oak Creek, and my competitor hit a shot which went into some nasty stuff (bushes, shrubs, trees, weeds, etc...).  He then declared he was playing a provisional, hit a great provisional shot about 250 straight down the fairway.  When we got close to the area that his ball might have been, while sitting in the golf cart on the cart path, he looked at the area and said "don't look for my ball it's gone, because if we find it I will have to take a nasty unplayable and I want to play my provisional".

A) Can he do that?

B) Can I go look for it and if I find it make him follow proper rules?

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Originally Posted by SCfanatic35

Question that feeds off of the lost ball rule.  I was playing in a tournament at Oak Creek, and my competitor hit a shot which went into some nasty stuff (bushes, shrubs, trees, weeds, etc...).  He then declared he was playing a provisional, hit a great provisional shot about 250 straight down the fairway.  When we got close to the area that his ball might have been, while sitting in the golf cart on the cart path, he looked at the area and said "don't look for my ball it's gone, because if we find it I will have to take a nasty unplayable and I want to play my provisional".

A) Can he do that?

B) Can I go look for it and if I find it make him follow proper rules?

My understanding is:

a) he can opt not to find it but that is not the same as "declaring" it lost

b) yes you can

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Question that feeds off of the lost ball rule.  I was playing in a tournament at Oak Creek, and my competitor hit a shot which went into some nasty stuff (bushes, shrubs, trees, weeds, etc...).  He then declared he was playing a provisional, hit a great provisional shot about 250 straight down the fairway.  When we got close to the area that his ball might have been, while sitting in the golf cart on the cart path, he looked at the area and said "don't look for my ball it's gone, because if we find it I will have to take a nasty unplayable and I want to play my provisional".  A) Can he do that? B) Can I go look for it and if I find it make him follow proper rules?

A) absolutely. B) sure ... If you want to be a dick. :)

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Originally Posted by SCfanatic35

Question that feeds off of the lost ball rule.  I was playing in a tournament at Oak Creek, and my competitor hit a shot which went into some nasty stuff (bushes, shrubs, trees, weeds, etc...).  He then declared he was playing a provisional, hit a great provisional shot about 250 straight down the fairway.  When we got close to the area that his ball might have been, while sitting in the golf cart on the cart path, he looked at the area and said "don't look for my ball it's gone, because if we find it I will have to take a nasty unplayable and I want to play my provisional".

A) Can he do that?

B) Can I go look for it and if I find it make him follow proper rules?

Yes to both questions.

Oops, I see that Golfingdad correctly answered.

Going off on a slight tangent, if he were convinced, after hitting his original ball that there was no way he was going to have an agreeable lie where he hit it, he could have declared the ball unplayable on the tee and hit a second drive. (He's laying 3, but that's the same with a provisional.)  The difference is, now his second drive is in play no matter if the original was found or not.

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Remember this happened on Big Break to Don Donatello… I believe it was the first "U.S. versus Europe" show.
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