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Easytotilt

Playing a Ball After a 3 Minute Search

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The new rules when searching for a golf ball is that you have 3 minutes to search for your ball. We had a situation today where a playing parter hit his ball in the rough and we spent longer than the allocated 3 minutes finding the ball. It wasn't to much longer literally 5 mins and we found it... It was a par 4 and in a competition. The group behind us were not on the tee box yet, and the group in front were still putting out so we weren't going anywhere. We got pulled up about it by a rules official, but our argument was that we were not affecting the pace of play as if we stopped searching at the 3 minute mark we would we just be stood there catching fly's waiting for the green to clear... So my question in this situation what  happens? Up to 3 minutes or when you are able to hit your next shot seems sensible to me thoughts?

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After three minutes the ball is lost.

There is no "situation" about it. Whether you're holding up play, waiting, etc. is completely irrelevant.

What did he do to finish the hole? Had he played a provisional? Because as soon as three minutes elapsed, if he didn't play a provisional, he was required to go back to the tee. If he didn't do so, he should have been DQed as he played from a wrong place in a serious breach fashion.*

* Unless the Local Rule allowing for a player to drop up above was in effect, in which case he gets two strokes for that Local Rule and two strokes for playing a wrong ball, but not in such a way that he committed a serious breach. So even if the Local Rule was in effect, he was hitting six (one off the tee, two for the Local OB/Lost rule, and two for playing a wrong ball; laying five, hitting six).

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One of the most anticipated “new” Rules for 2019 was the optional Local Rule that provides an alternative to the stroke-and-distance penalty for a ball lost or out of bounds. This situa…

 

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8 minutes ago, Easytotilt said:

We got pulled up about it by a rules official, but our argument was that we were not affecting the pace of play as if we stopped searching at the 3 minute mark we would we just be stood there catching fly's waiting for the green to clear...

Doesn't matter, past 3 minutes the ball is lost.

 

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He got DQ'ed... Just felt unreasonable. It was on the 7th hole, he had picked up the provisional and played the ball before the rules official came over.

But those are the rules!

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The rules can't be applied in a haphazard fashion.  They have to be applied in the same manner in every case or they cease to be valid.  It's one thing to fudge them in a casual round, but in a competition, they are the law.

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Played a round this weekend and the ball was not found after 3 minutes, but was actually on the green about 4 feet past the pin. I was looking in the wrong spot.

I guess that's also considered lost?

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4 minutes ago, Lihu said:

Played a round this weekend and the ball was not found after 3 minutes, but was actually on the green about 4 feet past the pin. I was looking in the wrong spot.

I guess that's also considered lost?

I imagine you know the answer already.

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45 minutes ago, DaveP043 said:

I imagine you know the answer already.

I’d like not to imagine, because someone else identified*** the ball as his until he realized it wasn’t. So, I ended searching the wrong area where it was assumed to have been hit.

Are both balls considered lost then? Mine was misidentified and it took more than 3 minutes of other people playing to the hole for me to identify it.

Just curious, I was not scoring that particular round anyway.

***I hit it around a tree branch and was not able to see the flight nor landing.

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12 minutes ago, Lihu said:

I’d like not to imagine, because someone else identified*** the ball as his until he realized it wasn’t. So, I ended searching the wrong area where it was assumed to have been hit.

Are both balls considered lost then? Mine was misidentified and it took more than 3 minutes of other people playing to the hole for me to identify it.

Just curious, I was not scoring that particular round anyway.

***I hit it around a tree branch and was not able to see the flight nor landing.

Interesting, and you might be able to make a case under the idea of equity, but I'm not real sure.  Your ball was found promptly, but you essentially weren't allowed to identify it as yours until after time had elapsed.  Its a situation where one guy's screw-up puts you in a bad spot.  Oddly enough, if you find a ball, mistakenly identify it as yours so stop searching, you stop the "search clock".   You can resume your search and restart the clock where you left off  once you realize its not yours.   .  

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24 minutes ago, DaveP043 said:

Interesting, and you might be able to make a case under the idea of equity, but I'm not real sure.  Your ball was found promptly, but you essentially weren't allowed to identify it as yours until after time had elapsed.  Its a situation where one guy's screw-up puts you in a bad spot. 

Yeah, but again, I didn’t count this round anyway. I rarely do unless the round is “in season”. It was my shot of the day though. :-)

 

24 minutes ago, DaveP043 said:

Oddly enough, if you find a ball, mistakenly identify it as yours so stop searching, you stop the "search clock".   You can resume your search and restart the clock where you left off  once you realize its not yours.   .  

Couldn’t this lend itself to abuse in some cases?

 

All I can comment on both situation is, no wonder why tournament scores are generally higher. 

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6 minutes ago, Lihu said:

Couldn’t this lend itself to abuse in some cases?

Not really. How?

You need a good reason to suspend… like someone else saying “I found it.”

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Just now, iacas said:

Not really. How?

Just thinking that there’s more chances to cheat if not done “correctly”?

For instance, could it give people who cheat more opportunities to drop stray balls to stop the search clock?

7 minutes ago, iacas said:

Not really. How?

You need a good reason to suspend… like someone else saying “I found it.”

Ah, got it...

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Who is supposed to be keeping the clock on the 3 minutes?  Is that on the opponent or the player themselves?

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35 minutes ago, Nutsmacker said:

Who is supposed to be keeping the clock on the 3 minutes?  Is that on the opponent or the player themselves?

Anyone can.

I look at my watch myself when I'm looking for my ball… and often look at my watch when others are looking for their balls, too.

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This got me thinking about whether or not I had ever seen the old 5-minute rule actually enforced in my little world of c-flight players and woolly muni courses.

My lot pumps a bunch of balls into rough that can sometimes be very thick. Perhaps twice I've seen someone race back to the tee after giving up on a search. I've never seen anyone pull out a stop watch to time them and there's no doubt some of these searches exceeded five minutes.

It would definitely be a better thing to get in the habit of hitting provisional shots when we aren't sure. Maybe the newness of the rule will make some people more aware of it,  but I'm guessing this one is going to get ignored at my level just like the five-minute limit was previously.

 

 

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22 minutes ago, mcanadiens said:

This got me thinking about whether or not I had ever seen the old 5-minute rule actually enforced in my little world of c-flight players and woolly muni courses.

The C flight around me are older gents who are real sticklers for the rules 😂

 

22 minutes ago, mcanadiens said:

My lot pumps a bunch of balls into rough that can sometimes be very thick. Perhaps twice I've seen someone race back to the tee after giving up on a search. I've never seen anyone pull out a stop watch to time them and there's no doubt some of these searches exceeded five minutes.

It would definitely be a better thing to get in the habit of hitting provisional shots when we aren't sure. Maybe the newness of the rule will make some people more aware of it,  but I'm guessing this one is going to get ignored at my level just like the five-minute limit was previously.

Most hit a provisional ball off the tee.

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35 minutes ago, mcanadiens said:

This got me thinking about whether or not I had ever seen the old 5-minute rule actually enforced in my little world of c-flight players and woolly muni courses.

My lot pumps a bunch of balls into rough that can sometimes be very thick. Perhaps twice I've seen someone race back to the tee after giving up on a search. I've never seen anyone pull out a stop watch to time them and there's no doubt some of these searches exceeded five minutes.

It would definitely be a better thing to get in the habit of hitting provisional shots when we aren't sure. Maybe the newness of the rule will make some people more aware of it,  but I'm guessing this one is going to get ignored at my level just like the five-minute limit was previously. 

5 minutes is longer than you think it is. Most players will give up well before they reach 5 minutes. You'll have to look a little more closely at the clock with 3 minutes, but I don't think it's going to be that big of change. Hopefully it will encourage more people to hit provisionals.

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48 minutes ago, mcanadiens said:

This got me thinking about whether or not I had ever seen the old 5-minute rule actually enforced in my little world of c-flight players and woolly muni courses.

My lot pumps a bunch of balls into rough that can sometimes be very thick. Perhaps twice I've seen someone race back to the tee after giving up on a search. I've never seen anyone pull out a stop watch to time them and there's no doubt some of these searches exceeded five minutes.

It would definitely be a better thing to get in the habit of hitting provisional shots when we aren't sure. Maybe the newness of the rule will make some people more aware of it,  but I'm guessing this one is going to get ignored at my level just like the five-minute limit was previously.

I can't say I've ever timed a search, someone (often me) will generally say that its been long enough, time to move on.  As @DeadMan says, 5 minutes is quite a long time.  With the new reduced search time, I'm planning to have my phone with me to time our searches, at least for a while until we become adjusted to the "feel" of 3 minutes.

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