Jump to content
CCC

PGA Tour Players Not Marking Balls when In Position to Assist Another Player, #Backstopping

252 posts in this topic Last Reply

Recommended Posts

23 minutes ago, Blackjack Don said:

Interesting controversy. Both sides are talking past one another, either not understanding or not caring. Because both sides are right?

This is not accurate.

It's in the Rules of Golf. Now and in 2019.

23 minutes ago, Blackjack Don said:

It is possibly against the spirit of the game and lighten up, Francis.

It's not only against the spirit of the game, it's against the RULES of the game.

23 minutes ago, Blackjack Don said:

This is not keeping with the Rule 22 but it is within the spirit of the game: we help playing partners look for lost balls, show them the bottom of the club so they know which iron we hit on a par-3, watch each other's lines on the greens. It's a game of small courtesies.

Bull.

Looking for a ball is a courtesy within the spirit of the game - you want to help players avoid penalties, and the game is ideally played by playing a ball from the tee to the hole, not on losing a ball.

Backstopping is against the Rules of the game, and thus the spirit of the game. It's not at all the same as "looking for a ball."

Showing the bottom of the club is a possible violation as well, though "everyone does it." Caddies even flash some fingers to the TV guys. Doesn't make it legal.

Not stepping on each other's lines is a courtesy, too, and not against the rules.

So what you managed to do, @Blackjack Don, is quote a guy who is also ignorant to the Rules, and justifies the actions under "courtesy." Bullshit.

It's a courtesy if I concede a guy's gimme in stroke play… and also not at all allowed. Who cares about the opinions of the uninformed?

This guy's reasonably well informed on this; he thinks it's wrong, and just blames the guy about to play instead of the guy leaving his ball by the hole: https://golfweek.com/2018/06/12/backstopping-controversy-brings-out-competitive-fire-in-foxs-paul-azinger/

Quote

It should come as no surprise that the Fox Sports lead analyst is openly hostile to backstopping, the controversial “helping hand” practice that has been the subject of heated debate on the grounds at Shinnecock Hills.

“The person at fault with backstopping is the person that goes next, not the guy who chips it up there a foot-and-a-half past the hole,” he said. “The next to play has the responsibility to ask the guy who chipped it there to mark. He needs to be told, ‘You need to mark that!’ The guy about to hit the next shot should not have that advantage. He just should not. The responsibility falls on the guy who could take advantage of it, not the guy who chips it up. He has to look like a bad guy for running up there and marking his ball?”

Zinger’s tone moves from incredulity to indignation.

“No!” he insisted. “The bad guy is the guy who chips a ball when that ball is sitting there. Nobody should do that! Nobody should do that!”

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Want to hide this ad? Register for free today!

3 hours ago, Blackjack Don said:

Some are utterly oblivious. Others, as Walker suggested, are happy to help out a pal. This is not keeping with the Rule 22 but it is within the spirit of the game: #askalan

If you are not joking - and I don't think you are - I am shocked and disgusted.

This is the whole point. You aren't allowed to "help out" a pal. You are disadvantaging the rest of the field because they are not being afforded the same help. It's like allowing your friend to kick his ball out of  a bunker.  You just don't do it. And.....minor point.... it's cheating. The opposite of being within  "the spirit of the game".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I always want to mark my ball and I also always wait for someone to mark theirs, particularly in a tournament. 

I did utilize backstopping once years ago in a better ball match. I was pitching from off the green and my partner's ball was a few feet from the hole and I didn't wait for him to mark it, mainly because he was still about 20 yards away. I hit his ball and mine stopped a foot from the hole, and we won the hole. I don't think THAT would be considered cheating, as it was match play. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, phan52 said:

I always want to mark my ball and I also always wait for someone to mark theirs, particularly in a tournament. 

I did utilize backstopping once years ago in a better ball match. I was pitching from off the green and my partner's ball was a few feet from the hole and I didn't wait for him to mark it, mainly because he was still about 20 yards away. I hit his ball and mine stopped a foot from the hole, and we won the hole. I don't think THAT would be considered cheating, as it was match play. 

So long as:

  • You and your partner didn't communicate about it.
  • The opponents didn't request that it be marked and lifted.

you're right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

1 minute ago, iacas said:

So long as:

  • You and your partner didn't communicate about it.
  • The opponents didn't request that it be marked and lifted.

you're right.

We didn't communicate about it and our opponents didn't say anything either. In fact my partner, who knew nothing about the rules, thought we lost the hole because I hit his ball. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, iacas said:

So long as:

  • You and your partner didn't communicate about it.
  • The opponents didn't request that it be marked and lifted.

you're right.

In match play, they're allowed to communicate, aren't they?  Its up to the opponents to request that the ball be marked. Its not like they're supposed to protect the field.  The pertinent decisions under Rule 22 specifically address stroke play.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

2 hours ago, DaveP043 said:

In match play, they're allowed to communicate, aren't they?  Its up to the opponents to request that the ball be marked. Its not like they're supposed to protect the field.  The pertinent decisions under Rule 22 specifically address stroke play.

To be honest, I don't know. A lot of rules like this are different in Match Play because there's no field, there's just your match.

Not really the topic here, of course, as they don't really play four-ball all that often on the PGA Tour. :-)

I will point out, again, though that PGA Tour players #BackStopping for others know the rules well enough to know that they'd mark and lift those balls in the Ryder or Presidents Cup before their opponents could hit.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

3 hours ago, DaveP043 said:

In match play, they're allowed to communicate, aren't they?  Its up to the opponents to request that the ball be marked. Its not like they're supposed to protect the field.  The pertinent decisions under Rule 22 specifically address stroke play.

f)    In match play, where there is no requirement to protect the interests of other competitors, it is up to the opponent(s) to request that the ball is lifted and so there is no penalty if partners agree to leave a ball as a backstop.

I believe you are correct @DaveP043.

 

@Blackjack Don Did you read how Koepka’s ball hitting his competitors ball thus stopping well short of where he would’ve ended up actually cost players money? Sure Brooks may have made his putt but it would’ve been about 10’+ longer...pretty significant. I believe it was Mickelson who lost about 100k by placing lower due to Koepka’s making his putt. You call that the ‘spirit of golf’? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

10 hours ago, iacas said:

I will point out, again, though that PGA Tour players #BackStopping for others know the rules well enough to know that they'd mark and lift those balls in the Ryder or Presidents Cup before their opponents could hit.

I agree completely here, and the Ryder Cup scenario is the way I'd expect these guys to make their decisions.  If they'd mark their ball in a Ryder Cup match, to avoid the potential that their ball could assist their opponent, they should mark it in stroke play too, so they don't assist their Fellow Competitor.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

19 hours ago, Vinsk said:

You call that the ‘spirit of golf’? 

Nope.

I think the whole idea of the "spirit of golf" is counterproductive and reactionary. It strangles the game. That's just my opinion. I don't have any facts to back it up, except I outhit from golf partner by 20-40 yards and he won't move up, because that's not the game. (But he did move up from the tips.) I think the spirit of the game is to have fun. I work in the gaming industry. I know when something's not fun.

I recognize this is a minority opinion, but that's all I've got. When I compare reactionary and laissez faire, I gotta go with laid back. Life is too short.

9 hours ago, DaveP043 said:

I agree completely here, and the Ryder Cup scenario is the way I'd expect these guys to make their decisions.  If they'd mark their ball in a Ryder Cup match, to avoid the potential that their ball could assist their opponent, they should mark it in stroke play too, so they don't assist their Fellow Competitor.  

Nothing wrong with this attitude. First and foremost, don't be an asshole. That's a pretty good philosophy, to me. Practice self-restraint. Be good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Blackjack Don said:

I think the whole idea of the "spirit of golf" is counterproductive and reactionary. It strangles the game. That's just my opinion.

Then either:

  • you don't understand what the "spirit of golf" is.
  • you're a "bad" person.

I'm gonna guess it's the former:

Quote

The Spirit of the Game 

Golf is played, for the most part, without the supervision of a referee or umpire. The game relies on the integrity of the individual to show consideration for other players and to abide by the Rules. All players should conduct themselves in a disciplined manner, demonstrating courtesy and sportsmanship at all times, irrespective of how competitive they may be. This is the spirit of the game of golf.

How that's "counterproductive" is beyond me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

2 minutes ago, Blackjack Don said:

Point of view

Rules eliminate the difficulties caused by different "points of view".  Cheats don't like getting busted so they try to minimise their guilt which always makes them look worse - Lexi, Michelle Wie etc. Saying it's a "point of view" when it clearly violates rules is the last refuge of a scoundrel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

8 minutes ago, Blackjack Don said:

Point of view

Wow. Then I need to come play black jack at one of your tables. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

11 minutes ago, Blackjack Don said:

Point of view

No.

And I guess it was the second.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

I will never play a round of golf where this rule, or any other rule, will make any difference to me. Not a single time. This makes me a bad person? A scoundrel, no less! Over something about as meaningless as anything can be?

That's pretty sick. And funny.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, Blackjack Don said:

I will never play a round of golf where this rule, or any other rule, will make any difference to me. Not a single time. This makes me a bad person?

For f***'s sake, nobody said that. Nor is that what you said.

2 hours ago, Blackjack Don said:

I think the whole idea of the "spirit of golf" is counterproductive and reactionary. It strangles the game.

That's what you said, and what people have reacted to.

1 minute ago, Blackjack Don said:

Over something about as meaningless as anything can be?

It's not meaningless.

Just within the last few months it cost two people $100,000.

And it's cost some people fans, and integrity.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

2 hours ago, Blackjack Don said:

recognize this is a minority opinion, but that's all I've got. When I compare reactionary and laissez faire, I gotta go with laid back. Life is too short.

It’s beyond minority. It’s a super philosophy that bears no reason and quite frankly no rational sense to speak of. It breeds chaos and disarray and cannot support any organized competitive event. Golf is both recreational and a living for those guys. Not everyone is rolling in the dough. Someone losing out on their means to support their family because another player was just ‘laid back’ is hardly something to consider as the ‘spirit of golf.’ Such a shame you actually feel this way. If you really do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now



×

Important Information

Welcome to TST! Signing up is free, and you'll see fewer ads and can talk with fellow golf enthusiasts! By using TST, you agree to our Terms of Use, our Privacy Policy, and our Guidelines.

The popup will be closed in 10 seconds...