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The rules of golf consist of a standard set of regulations and procedures by which the sport of golf should be played and prescribe penalties for rule infractions. They are jointly written and administered by the R&A (the governing body of golf worldwide except in the United States and Mexico, which are the responsibility of the United States Golf Association (USGA). Since the beginning, The R&A and USGA have shared a singular passion for the game of golf. Their adoption of a single set of Rules established a common code by which all of golf is played worldwide. More than just a Rules book, it helps inform and guide a game that always seeks to challenge and inspire.In addition to the rules, golf adheres to a code of conduct known as etiquette, which generally means playing the game with due respect for the golf course and other players. Etiquette is often seen as being as important to the sport as the rules themselves.

For more information, click on the rules covered below:

  • Rule No 1

    The Game

    Rule 1.1: General

    The Game of Golf consists of playing a ball with a club from the teeing ground into the hole by a stroke or successive strokes in accordance with the Rules.

    Rule 1.2: Exerting Influence on Ball

    A player or caddie must not take any action to influence the position or the movement of a ball except in accordance with the Rules.
    (Removal of loose impediment – see Rule 23-1)
    (Removal of movable obstruction – see Rule 24-1)

    * PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 1-2:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.
    * In the case of a serious breach of Rule 1-2, the Committee may impose a penalty of disqualification.

    Note: A player is deemed to have committed a serious breach of Rule 1-2 if the Committee considers that his act of influencing the position or movement of the ball has allowed him or another player to gain a significant advantage or has placed another player, other than his partner, at a significant disadvantage.

    Rule 1.3: Agreement to Waive Rules

    Players must not agree to exclude the operation of any Rule or to waive any penalty incurred.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 1-3:
    Match play – Disqualification of both sides;
    Stroke play – Disqualification of competitors concerned.

    (Agreeing to play out of turn in stroke play – see Rule 10-2c)

    Rule 1.4: Points Not Covered by Rules

    if any point in dispute is not covered by the Rules, the decision should be made in accordance with equity.

  • Rule No 2

    Match Play

    Rule 2.1: General

    A match consists of one side playing against another over a stipulated round unless otherwise decreed by the Committee. In match play the game is played by holes. Except as otherwise provided in the Rules, a hole is won by the side that holes its ball in the fewer strokes. In a handicap match, the lower net score wins the hole. The state of the match is expressed by the terms: so many “holes up” or “all square”, and so many “to play”. A side is “dormie’’ when it is as many holes up as there are holes remaining to be played.

    Rule 2.2: Halved Hole

    A hole is halved if each side holes out in the same number of strokes. When a player has holed out and his opponent has been left with a stroke for the half, if the player subsequently incurs a penalty, the hole is halved.

    Rule 2.3: Winner of Match

    A match is won when one side leads by a number of holes greater than the number remaining to be played. If there is a tie, the Committee may extend the stipulated round by as many holes as are required for a match to be won.

    Rule 2.4: Concession of Match, Hole or Next Stroke

    A player may concede a match at any time prior to the start or conclusion of that match.

    A player may concede a hole at any time prior to the start or conclusion of that hole.

    A player may concede his opponent’s next stroke at any time, provided the opponent’s ball is at rest.The opponent is considered to have holed out with his next stroke, and the ball may be removed by either side. A concession may not be declined or withdrawn.
    (Ball overhanging hole – see Rule 16-2)

    Rule 2.5: Doubt as to Procedure; Disputes and Claims Doubt as

    In match play, if a doubt or dispute arises between the players, a player may make a claim. If no duly authorised representative of the Committee is available within a reasonable time, the players must continue the match without delay.The Committee may consider a claim only if the player making the claim notifies his opponent

    (i) that he is making a claim,

    (ii) of the facts of the situation and

    (iii) that he wants a ruling.

    The claim must be made before any player in the match plays from the next teeing ground or, in the case of the last hole of the match, before all players in the match leave the putting green.

    A later claim may not be considered by the Committee, unless it is based on facts previously unknown to the player making the claim and he had been given wrong information (Rules 6-2a and 9) by an opponent. Once the result of the match has been officially announced, a later claim may not be considered by the Committee, unless it is satisfied that the opponent knew he was giving wrong information.

    Rule 2.6: General Penalty

    The penalty for a breach of a Rule in match play is loss of hole except when otherwise provided.

  • Rule No 3

    Stroke Play

    Rule 3.1: General;Winner

    A stroke play competition consists of competitors completing each hole of a stipulated round or rounds and, for each round, returning a score card on which there is a gross score for each hole. Each competitor is playing against every other competitor in the competition.

    he competitor who plays the stipulated round or rounds in the fewest strokes is the winner.

    In a handicap competition, the competitor with the lowest net score for the stipulated round or rounds is the winner.

    Rule 3.2: Failure to Hole Out

    If a competitor fails to hole out at any hole and does not correct his mistake before he makes a stroke on the next teeing ground or, in the
    case of the last hole of the round, before he leaves the putting green, he is disqualified.

    Rule 3.3: Doubt as to Procedure

    a. Procedure
    In stroke play, if a competitor is doubtful of his rights or the correct procedure during the play of a hole, he may, without penalty, complete
    the hole with two balls. After the doubtful situation has arisen and before taking further action, the competitor must announce to his marker or fellow-competitor that he intends to play two balls and which ball he wishes to count if the Rules permit.

    The competitor must report the facts of the situation to the Committee before returning his score card. If he fails to do so, he is disqualified.
    Note: If the competitor takes further action before dealing with the doubtful situation, Rule 3-3 is not applicable.The score with the original
    ball counts or, if the original ball is not one of the balls being played, the score with the first ball put into play counts, even if the Rules do not allow the procedure adopted for that ball. However, the competitor incurs no penalty for having played a second ball, and any penalty
    strokes incurred solely by playing that ball do not count in his score.

    b. Determination of Score for Hole
    (i) If the ball that the competitor selected in advance to count has been played in accordance with the Rules, the score with that ball is the
         competitor’s score for the hole. Otherwise, the score with the other ball counts if the Rules allow the procedure adopted for that ball.
    (ii) If the competitor fails to announce in advance his decision to complete the hole with two balls, or which ball he wishes to count,
         the score with the original ball counts, provided it has been played in accordance with the Rules. If the original ball is not one of the
         balls being played, the first ball put into play counts, provided it has been played in accordance with the Rules. Otherwise, the score
         with the other ball counts if the Rules allow the procedure adopted for that ball.

    Note 1: If a competitor plays a second ball under Rule 3-3, the strokes made after this Rule has been invoked with the ball ruled not to count and penalty strokes incurred solely by playing that ball are disregarded.

    Rule 3.4: Refusal to Comply with a Rule

    If a competitor refuses to comply with a Rule affecting the rights of another competitor, he is disqualified.

    Rule 3.5: General Penalty

    The penalty for a breach of a Rule in stroke play is two strokes except when otherwise provided.

  • Rule No 4

    Clubs

    Rule 4.1: Form and Make of Clubs

    a. General

    The player’s clubs must conform with this Rule and the provisions, specifications and interpretations set forth in Appendix II.

    Note: The Committee may require, in the conditions of a competition (Rule 33-1), that any driver the player carries must have a clubhead, identified by model and loft, that is named on the current List of Conforming Driver Heads issued by the R&A. b.Wear and Alteration A club that conforms with the Rules when new is deemed to conform after wear through normal use. Any part of a club that has been purposely altered is regarded as new and must, in its altered state, conform with the Rules.

    b. Wear and Alteration

    A club that conforms with the Rules when new is deemed to conform after wear through normal use. Any part of a club that has been
    purposely altered is regarded as new and must, in its altered state, conform with the Rules.

    Rule 4.2: Playing Characteristics Changed and Foreign Material

    a. Playing Characteristics Changed

    During a stipulated round, the playing characteristics of a club must not be purposely changed by adjustment or by any other means.

    b. Foreign Material

    Foreign material must not be applied to the club face for the purpose of influencing the movement of the ball.

    *PENALTY FOR CARRYING, BUT NOT MAKING STROKE WITH, CLUB OR CLUBS IN BREACH OF RULE 4-1 or 4-2:
    Match play – At the conclusion of the hole at which the breach is discovered, the state of the match is adjusted by deducting one hole
    for each hole at which a breach occurred; maximum deduction per round – Two holes.
    Stroke play – Two strokes for each hole at which any breach occurred;
    maximum penalty per round – Four strokes.
    Match or stroke play – In the event of a breach between the play of two holes, the penalty applies to the next hole.
    Bogey and par competitions – See Note 1 to Rule 32-1a.
    Stableford competitions – See Note 1 to Rule 32-1b.

    *Any club or clubs carried in breach of Rule 4-1 or 4–2 must be declared out of play by the player to his opponent in match play or his
    marker or a fellow-competitor in stroke play immediately upon discovery that a breach has occurred. If the player fails to do so, he is disqualified.

    PENALTY FOR MAKING STROKE WITH CLUB IN BREACH OF RULE 4-1 or 4-2: Disqualification.

    Rule 4.3: Damaged Clubs: Repair and Replacement

    a. Damage in Normal Course of Play

    If, during a stipulated round, a player’s club is damaged in the normal course of play, he may:
    (i) use the club in its damaged state for the remainder of the stipulated round; or
    (ii) without unduly delaying play, repair it or have it repaired; or
    (iii) as an additional option available only if the club is unfit for play, replace the damaged club with any club.The replacement of a club
          must not unduly delay play and must not be made by borrowing any club selected for play by any other person playing on the course.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 4-3a:

    See Penalty Statements for Rule 4-4a or b, and Rule 4-4c.

    Note: A club is unfit for play if it is substantially damaged, e.g. the shaft is dented, significantly bent or breaks into pieces; the clubhead
    becomes loose, detached or significantly deformed; or the grip becomes loose. A club is not unfit for play solely because the club’s
    lie or loft has been altered, or the clubhead is scratched.

    b. Damage Other Than in Normal Course of Play

    If, during a stipulated round, a player’s club is damaged other than in the normal course of play rendering it non-conforming or changing its
    playing characteristics, the club must not subsequently be used or replaced during the round.

    c. Damage Prior to Round

    A player may use a club damaged prior to a round, provided the club, in its damaged state, conforms with the Rules.
    Damage to a club that occurred prior to a round may be repaired during the round, provided the playing characteristics are not changed
    and play is not unduly delayed.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 4-3b or c: Disqualification.

    Rule 4.4: Maximum of Fourteen Clubs

    a. Selection and Addition of Clubs

    The player must not start a stipulated round with more than fourteen clubs. He is limited to the clubs thus selected for that round, except
    that if he started with fewer than fourteen clubs, he may add any number, provided his total number does not exceed fourteen.
    The addition of a club or clubs must not unduly delay play (Rule 6-7) and the player must not add or borrow any club selected for play by
    any other person playing on the course.

    b. Partners May Share Clubs

    Partners may share clubs, provided that the total number of clubs carried by the partners so sharing does not exceed fourteen.
    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 4-4a or b, REGARDLESS OF NUMBER OF EXCESS CLUBS CARRIED:
    Match play – At the conclusion of the hole at which the breach is discovered, the state of the match is adjusted by deducting one hole
    for each hole at which a breach occurred; maximum deduction per round – Two holes.
    Stroke play – Two strokes for each hole at which any breach occurred; maximum penalty per round – Four strokes.
    Bogey and par competitions – See Note 1 to Rule 32-1a.
    Stableford competitions – See Note 1 to Rule 32-1b.

    c. Excess Club Declared Out of Play

    Any club or clubs carried or used in breach of Rule 4-3a(iii) or Rule 4-4 must be declared out of play by the player to his opponent in match
    play or his marker or a fellow-competitor in stroke play immediately upon discovery that a breach has occurred.The player must not use the club or clubs for the remainder of the stipulated round.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 4-4c: Disqualification.

  • Rule No 5

    The Ball

    Rule 5.1: General

    The ball the player plays must conform to the requirements specified in Appendix III.

    Note: The Committee may require, in the conditions of a competition (Rule 33-1), that the ball the player plays must be named on the
    current List of Conforming Golf Balls issued by the R&A.

    Rule 5.2: Foreign Material

    Foreign material must not be applied to a ball for the purpose of changing its playing characteristics.
    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 5-1 or 5-2: Disqualification.

    Rule 5.3: Ball Unfit for Play

    A ball is unfit for play if it is visibly cut, cracked or out of shape. A ball is not unfit for play solely because mud or other materials adhere to it, its surface is scratched or scraped or its paint is damaged or discoloured. If a player has reason to believe his ball has become unfit for play during play of the hole being played, he may lift the ball, without penalty, to determine whether it is unfit.

    Before lifting the ball, the player must announce his intention to his opponent in match play or his marker or a fellow-competitor in stroke
    play and mark the position of the ball. He may then lift and examine it, provided that he gives his opponent, marker or fellow-competitor an
    opportunity to examine the ball and observe the lifting and replacement.The ball must not be cleaned when lifted under Rule 5-3.

    If the player fails to comply with all or any part of this procedure, or if he lifts the ball without having reason to believe that it has become
    unfit for play during play of the hole being played, he incurs a penalty of one stroke.
    If it is determined that the ball has become unfit for play during play of the hole being played, the player may substitute another ball, placing it on the spot where the original ball lay. Otherwise, the original ball must be replaced. If a player substitutes a ball when not permitted and
    makes a stroke at the wrongly substituted ball, he incurs the general penalty for a breach of Rule 5-3, but there is no additional penalty
    under this Rule or Rule 15-2.

    If a ball breaks into pieces as a result of a stroke, the stroke is cancelled and the player must play a ball, without penalty, as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was played (see Rule 20-5).
    *PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 5-3:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.
    *If a player incurs the general penalty for a breach of Rule 5-3, there is no additional penalty under this Rule.

    Note 1: If the opponent, marker or fellow-competitor wishes to dispute a claim of unfitness, he must do so before the player plays another ball.

    Note 2: If the original lie of a ball to be placed or replaced has been altered, see Rule 20-3b.
    (Cleaning ball lifted from putting green or under any other Rule – see Rule 21)

  • Rule No 6

    The Player

    Rule 6.1: Rules

    The player and his caddie are responsible for knowing the Rules. During a stipulated round, for any breach of a Rule by his caddie, the player incurs the applicable penalty.

    Rule 6.2: Handicap

    a. Match Play
    Before starting a match in a handicap competition, the players should determine from one another their respective handicaps. If a player begins a match having declared a handicap higher than that to which he is entitled and this affects the number of strokes given or received, he is disqualified; otherwise, the player must play off the declared handicap.

    b. Stroke Play
    In any round of a handicap competition, the competitor must ensure that his handicap is recorded on his score card before it is returned to the Committee. If no handicap is recorded on his score card before it is returned (Rule 6-6b), or if the recorded handicap is higher than that to which he is entitled and this affects the number of strokes received, he is disqualified from the handicap competition; otherwise, the score stands.

    Note: It is the player’s responsibility to know the holes at which handicap strokes are to be given or received.

    Rule 6.3: Time of Starting and Groups

    a.Time of Starting
    The player must start at the time established by the Committee.

    b. Groups
    In stroke play, the competitor must remain throughout the round in the group arranged by the Committee, unless the Committee authorises or
    ratifies a change.
    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 6-3: Disqualification.
    (Best-ball and four-ball play – see Rules 30-3a and 31-2)

    Note: The Committee may provide, in the conditions of a competition (Rule 33-1), that if the player arrives at his starting point, ready to play,
    within five minutes after his starting time, in the absence of circumstances that warrant waiving the penalty of disqualification as provided in Rule 33-7, the penalty for failure to start on time is loss of the first hole in match play or two strokes at the first hole in stroke play instead of disqualification.

    Rule 6.4: Caddie

    The player may be assisted by a caddie, but he is limited to only one caddie at any one time.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 6-4:
    Match play – At the conclusion of the hole at which the breach is discovered, the state of the match is adjusted by deducting one hole for each hole at which a breach occurred; maximum deduction per round – Two holes.

    Stroke play – Two strokes for each hole at which any breach occurred; maximum penalty per round – Four strokes.

    Match or stroke play – In the event of a breach between the play of two holes, the penalty applies to the next hole. A player having more than one caddie in breach of this Rule must immediately upon discovery that a breach has occurred ensure that he has no more than one caddie at any one time during the remainder of the stipulated round. Otherwise, the player is disqualified.
    Bogey and par competitions – See Note 1 to Rule 32-1a.
    Stableford competitions – See Note 1 to Rule 32-1b.

    Note: The Committee may, in the conditions of a competition (Rule 33-1),
    prohibit the use of caddies or restrict a player in his choice of caddie.

    Rule 6.5: Ball

    The responsibility for playing the proper ball rests with the player. Each player should put an identification mark on his ball.

    Rule 6.6: Scoring in Stroke Play

    a. Recording Scores
    After each hole the marker should check the score with the competitor and record it. On completion of the round the marker must sign the
    score card and hand it to the competitor. If more than one marker records the scores, each must sign for the part for which he is responsible.

    b. Signing and Returning Score Card
    After completion of the round, the competitor should check his score for each hole and settle any doubtful points with the Committee. He must ensure that the marker or markers have signed the score card, sign the score card himself and return it to the Committee as soon as possible.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 6-6b:
    Disqualification.

    c. Alteration of Score Card
    No alteration may be made on a score card after the competitor has returned it to the Committee.

    d.Wrong Score for Hole
    The competitor is responsible for the correctness of the score recorded for each hole on his score card. If he returns a score for any hole lower than actually taken, he is disqualified. If he returns a score for any hole higher than actually taken, the score as returned stands.

    Note 1: The Committee is responsible for the addition of scores and application of the handicap recorded on the score card – see Rule 33-5.

    Note 2: In four-ball stroke play, see also Rule 31-3 and 31-7a.

    Rule 6.7: Undue Delay; Slow Play

    The player must play without undue delay and in accordance with any pace of play guidelines that the Committee may establish. Between
    completion of a hole and playing from the next teeing ground, the player must not unduly delay play.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 6-7:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.
    Bogey and par competitions – See Note 2 to Rule 32-1a.
    Stableford competitions – See Note 2 to Rule 32-1b.
    For subsequent offence – Disqualification.

    Note 1: If the player unduly delays play between holes, he is delaying he play of the next hole and, except for bogey, par and Stableford competitions (see Rule 32), the penalty applies to that hole.

    Note 2: For the purpose of preventing slow play, the Committee may, in the conditions of a competition (Rule 33-1), establish pace of play guidelines including maximum periods of time allowed to complete a stipulated round, a hole or a stroke. In stroke play only, the Committee may, in such a condition, modify the penalty for a breach of this Rule as follows:
    First offence – One stroke;
    Second offence – Two strokes.
    For subsequent offence – Disqualification.

    Rule 6.8: Discontinuance of Play; Resumption of Play

    a.When Permitted
    The player must not discontinue play unless:
    (i) the Committee has suspended play;
    (ii) he believes there is danger from lightning;
    (iii) he is seeking a decision from the Committee on a doubtful or  disputed point (see Rules 2-5 and 34-3); or
    (iv) there is some other good reason such as sudden illness.

    Bad weather is not of itself a good reason for discontinuing play. If the player discontinues play without specific permission from the Committee, he must report to the Committee as soon as practicable. If he does so and the Committee considers his reason satisfactory, there is no penalty. Otherwise, the player is disqualified.

    Exception in match play: Players discontinuing match play by agreement are not subject to disqualification, unless by so doing the competition is delayed.
    Note: Leaving the course does not of itself constitute discontinuance of play.

    b. Procedure When Play Suspended by Committee
    When play is suspended by the Committee, if the players in a match or group are between the play of two holes, they must not resume play until the Committee has ordered a resumption of play. If they have started play of a hole, they may discontinue play immediately or continue play of the hole, provided they do so without delay. If the players choose to continue play of the hole, they are permitted to discontinue play before completing it. In any case, play must be discontinued after the hole is completed. The players must resume play when the Committee has ordered a resumption of play.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 6-8b:
    Disqualification.

    Note: The Committee may provide, in the conditions of a competition (Rule 33-1), that in potentially dangerous situations play must be discontinued immediately following a suspension of play by the Committee. If a player fails to discontinue play immediately, he is disqualified, unless circumstances warrant waiving the penalty as provided in Rule 33-7.

    c. Lifting Ball When Play Discontinued
    When a player discontinues play of a hole under Rule 6-8a, he may lift his ball, without penalty, only if the Committee has suspended play or
    there is a good reason to lift it. Before lifting the ball the player must mark its position. If the player discontinues play and lifts his ball without specific permission from the Committee, he must, when reporting to the Committee (Rule 6-8a), report the lifting of the ball. If the player lifts the ball without a good reason to do so, fails to mark the position of the ball before lifting it or fails to report the lifting of the ball, he incurs a penalty of one stroke.

    d. Procedure When Play Resumed
    Play must be resumed from where it was discontinued, even if resumption occurs on a subsequent day.The player must, either before or when play is resumed, proceed as follows:
    (i) if the player has lifted the ball, he must, provided he was entitled to lift it under Rule 6-8c, place the original ball or a substituted ball on       the spot from which the original ball was lifted. Otherwise, the       original ball must be replaced;
    (ii) if the player has not lifted his ball, he may, provided he was entitled to lift it under Rule 6-8c, lift, clean and replace the ball, or substitute a ball, on the spot from which the original ball was lifted. Before lifting the ball he must mark its position; or
    (iii) if the player’s ball or ball-marker is moved (including by wind or water) while play is discontinued, a ball or ball-marker must be placed on the spot from which the original ball or ball-marker was moved.

    Note: If the spot where the ball is to be placed is impossible to determine, it must be estimated and the ball placed on the estimated spot.The provisions of Rule 20-3c do not apply.

    *PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 6-8d:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.
    *If a player incurs the general penalty for a breach of Rule 6-8d, there is no additional penalty under Rule 6-8c.

  • Rule No 7

    Practice

    Rule 7.1: Before or Between Rounds

    a. Match Play
    On any day of a match play competition, a player may practise on the competition course before a round.

    b. Stroke Play
    Before a round or play-off on any day of a stroke play competition, a competitor must not practise on the competition course or test the surface of any putting green on the course by rolling a ball or roughening or scraping the surface. When two or more rounds of a stroke play competition are to be
    played over consecutive days, a competitor must not practise between those rounds on any competition course remaining to be played, or
    test the surface of any putting green on such course by rolling a ball or roughening or scraping the surface.

    Exception: Practice putting or chipping on or near the first teeing ground before starting a round or play-off is permitted.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 7-1b:
    Disqualification.

    Note: The Committee may, in the conditions of a competition
    (Rule 33-1), prohibit practice on the competition course on any day of
    a match play competition or permit practice on the competition
    course or part of the course (Rule 33-2c) on any day of or between
    rounds of a stroke play competition.

    Rule 7.2: During Round

    A player must not make a practice stroke during play of a hole. Between the play of two holes a player must not make a practice stroke, except that he may practise putting or chipping on or near:

    a. the putting green of the hole last played,
    b. any practice putting green, or
    c. the teeing ground of the next hole to be played in the round, provided a practice stroke is not made from a hazard and does not unduly delay play (Rule 6-7).
    Strokes made in continuing the play of a hole, the result of which has been decided, are not practice strokes.

    Exception: When play has been suspended by the Committee, a player may, prior to resumption of play, practise

    (a) as provided in this Rule,
    (b) anywhere other than on the competition course and (c) as otherwise permitted by the Committee.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 7-2:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.
    In the event of a breach between the play of two holes, the penalty
    applies to the next hole.

    Note 1: A practice swing is not a practice stroke and may be taken at any place, provided the player does not breach the Rules.

    Note 2: The Committee may, in the conditions of a competition (Rule 33-1), prohibit:
    (a) practice on or near the putting green of the hole last played, and
    (b) rolling a ball on the putting green of the hole last played.

  • Rule No 8

    Advice; Indicating Line of Play

    Rule 8.1: Advice

    During a stipulated round, a player must not:

    a. give advice to anyone in the competition playing on the course other than his partner, or
    b. ask for advice from anyone other than his partner or either of their caddies.

    Rule 8.2: Indicating Line of Play

    a. Other Than on Putting Green
    Except on the putting green, a player may have the line of play indicated to him by anyone, but no one may be positioned by the player on or close
    to the line or an extension of the line beyond the hole while the stroke is being made. Any mark placed by the player or with his knowledge to
    indicate the line must be removed before the stroke is made.
    Exception: Flagstick attended or held up – see Rule 17-1.

    b. On the Putting Green
    When the player’s ball is on the putting green, the player, his partner or either of their caddies may, before but not during the stroke, point out a
    line for putting, but in so doing the putting green must not be touched.  A mark must not be placed anywhere to indicate a line for putting.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

    Note: The Committee may, in the conditions of a team competition (Rule 33-1), permit each team to appoint one person who may give advice (including pointing out a line for putting) to members of that team.The Committee may establish conditions relating to the appointment and permitted conduct of that person, who must be identified to the Committee before giving advice.

  • Rule No 9

    Information as to Strokes Taken

    Rule 9.1: General

    The number of strokes a player has taken includes any penalty strokes incurred.

    Rule 9.2: Match Play

    a. Information as to Strokes Taken
    An opponent is entitled to ascertain from the player, during the play of a hole, the number of strokes he has taken and, after play of a hole, the
    number of strokes taken on the hole just completed.

    b.Wrong Information
    A player must not give wrong information to his opponent. If a player gives wrong information, he loses the hole. A player is deemed to have given wrong information if he:
    (i) fails to inform his opponent as soon as practicable that he has incurred a penalty, unless

          (a) he was obviously proceeding under a Rule involving a penalty and this was observed by his opponent, or
          (b) he corrects the mistake before his opponent makes his next stroke; or

    (ii) gives incorrect information during play of a hole regarding the number of strokes taken and does not correct the mistake before his opponent makes his next stroke; or
    (iii) gives incorrect information regarding the number of strokes taken to complete a hole and this affects the opponent’s understanding of the result of the hole, unless he corrects the mistake before any player makes a stroke from the next teeing ground or, in the case of the last hole of the match, before all players leave the putting green.

    A player has given wrong information even if it is due to the failure to include a penalty that he did not know he had incurred. It is the player’s responsibility to know the Rules.

  • Rule No 10

    Order of Play

    Rule 10.1: Match Play

    a.When Starting Play of Hole
    The side that has the honour at the first teeing ground is determined by the order of the draw. In the absence of a draw, the honour should be
    decided by lot. The side that wins a hole takes the honour at the next teeing ground. If a hole has been halved, the side that had the honour at the previous teeing ground retains it.

    b. During Play of Hole
    After both players have started play of the hole, the ball farther from the hole is played first. If the balls are equidistant from the hole or their positions relative to the hole are not determinable, the ball to be played first should be decided by lot.

    Exception: Rule 30-3b (best-ball and four-ball match play).

    Note: When it becomes known that the original ball is not to be played as it lies and the player is required to play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played (see Rule 20-5), the order of play is determined by the spot from which the previous stroke was made. When a ball may be played from a spot other than where the previous stroke was made, the order of play is determined by the position where the original ball came to rest.

    c. Playing Out of Turn
    If a player plays when his opponent should have played, there is no penalty, but the opponent may immediately require the player to cancel the stroke so made and, in correct order, play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played
    (see Rule 20-5).

    Rule 10.2: Stroke Play

    a.When Starting Play of Hole
    The competitor who has the honour at the first teeing ground is determined by the order of the draw. In the absence of a draw, the honour should be decided by lot. The competitor with the lowest score at a hole takes the honour at the next teeing ground.The competitor with the second lowest score plays next and so on. If two or more competitors have the same score at a hole, they play from the next teeing ground in the same order as at the
    previous teeing ground.

    Exception: Rule 32-1 (handicap bogey, par and Stableford competitions).

    b. During Play of Hole
    After the competitors have started play of the hole, the ball farthest from the hole is played first. If two or more balls are equidistant from the hole or their positions relative to the hole are not determinable, the ball to be played first should be decided by lot.

    Exceptions: Rules 22 (ball assisting or interfering with play) and 31-4
    (four-ball stroke play).

    Note: When it becomes known that the original ball is not to be played as it lies and the competitor is required to play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played (see Rule 20-5), the order of play is determined by the spot from which the previous stroke was made. When a ball may be played from a spot other than where the previous stroke was made, the order of play is determined by the position where the original ball came to rest.

    c. Playing Out of Turn

    If a competitor plays out of turn, there is no penalty and the ball is played as it lies. If, however, the Committee determines that competitors have agreed to play out of turn to give one of them an advantage, they are disqualified.

    (Making stroke while another ball in motion after stroke from putting green – see Rule 16-1f)
    (Incorrect order of play in threesome and foursome stroke play – see Rule 29-3)

    Rule 10.3: Provisional Ball or Another Ball from Teeing Ground

    If a player plays a provisional ball or another ball from the teeing ground, he must do so after his opponent or fellow-competitor has made his first stroke. If more than one player elects to play a provisional ball or is required to play another ball from the teeing ground, the original order of play must be retained. If a player plays a provisional ball or another ball out of turn, Rule 10-1c or 10-2c applies.

  • Rule No 11

    Teeing Ground

    Rule 11.1: Teeing

    When a player is putting a ball into play from the teeing ground, it must be played from within the teeing ground and from the surface of the ground or from a conforming tee in or on the surface of the ground.

    For the purposes of this Rule, the surface of the ground includes an irregularity of surface (whether or not created by the player) and sand or other natural substance (whether or not placed by the player). If a player makes a stroke at a ball on a non-conforming tee, or at a ball teed in a manner not permitted by this Rule, he is disqualified. A player may stand outside the teeing ground to play a ball within it.

    Rule 11.2: Tee-Markers

    Before a player makes his first stroke with any ball on the teeing ground of the hole being played, the tee-markers are deemed to be fixed. In these circumstances, if the player moves or allows to be moved a tee-marker for the purpose of avoiding interference with his stance, the area of his intended swing or his line of play, he incurs the penalty for a breach of Rule 13-2.

    Rule 11.3: Ball Falling off Tee

    If a ball, when not in play, falls off a tee or is knocked off a tee by the player in addressing it, it may be re-teed, without penalty. However, if a stroke is made at the ball in these circumstances, whether the ball is moving or not, the stroke counts, but there is no penalty.

    Rule 11.4: Playing from Outside Teeing Ground

    a. Match Play
    If a player, when starting a hole, plays a ball from outside the teeing ground, there is no penalty, but the opponent may immediately require the player to cancel the stroke and play a ball from within the teeing ground.

    b. Stroke Play
    If a competitor, when starting a hole, plays a ball from outside the teeing ground, he incurs a penalty of two strokes and must then play a ball from within the teeing ground. If the competitor makes a stroke from the next teeing ground without first correcting his mistake or, in the case of the last hole of the round, leaves the putting green without first declaring his intention to correct his mistake, he is disqualified. The stroke from outside the teeing ground and any subsequent strokes by the competitor on the hole prior to his correction of the mistake do not count in his score.

    Rule 11.5: Playing from Wrong Teeing Ground

     The provisions of Rule 11-4 apply.

  • Rule No 12

    Searching for and Identifying Ball

    Rule 12.1: Searching for Ball; Seeing Ball

    In searching for his ball anywhere on the course, the player may touch or bend long grass, rushes, bushes, whins, heather or the like, but only
    to the extent necessary to find and identify it, provided that this does not improve the lie of the ball, the area of his intended stance or swing or his line of play.

    A player is not necessarily entitled to see his ball when making a stroke. In a hazard, if a ball is believed to be covered by loose impediments or
    sand, the player may remove by probing or raking with a club or otherwise, as many loose impediments or as much sand as will enable him to see a part of the ball. If an excess is removed, there is no penalty and the ball must be re-covered so that only a part of it is visible. If the ball is moved during the removal, there is no penalty; the ball must be replaced and, if necessary, re-covered. As to removal of loose impediments outside a hazard, see Rule 23-1.

    If a ball lying in or on an obstruction or in an abnormal ground condition is accidentally moved during search, there is no penalty; the ball must
    be replaced, unless the player elects to proceed under Rule 24-1b, 24-2b or 25-1b as applicable. If the player replaces the ball, he may still
    proceed under Rule 24-1b, 24-2b or 25-1b if applicable.

    If a ball is believed to be lying in water in a water hazard, the player may probe for it with a club or otherwise. If the ball is moved in probing, it
    must be replaced, unless the player elects to proceed under Rule 26-1. There is no penalty for causing the ball to move, provided the movement of the ball was directly attributable to the specific act of probing. Otherwise, the player incurs a penalty stroke under Rule 18-2a.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 12-1:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

    Rule 12.2: Identifying Ball

    The responsibility for playing the proper ball rests with the player. Each player should put an identification mark on his ball. If a player has reason to believe a ball at rest is his and it is necessary to lift the ball in order to identify it, he may lift the ball, without penalty, in order to do so.
    Before lifting the ball, the player must announce his intention to his opponent in match play or his marker or a fellow-competitor in stroke play and mark the position of the ball. He may then lift the ball and identify it, provided that he gives his opponent, marker or fellow-competitor an opportunity to observe the lifting and replacement.The ball must not be cleaned beyond the extent necessary for identification when lifted under Rule 12-2.

    If the ball is the player’s ball and he fails to comply with all or any part of this procedure, or he lifts his ball in order to identify it when not necessary to do so, he incurs a penalty of one stroke. If the lifted ball is the player’s ball, he must replace it. If he fails to do so, he incurs the general penalty for a breach of Rule 12-2, but there is no additional penalty under this Rule.

    Note: If the original lie of a ball to be placed or replaced has been altered, see Rule 20-3b.
    *PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 12-2:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.
    *If a player incurs the general penalty for a breach of Rule 12-2, there is no additional penalty under this Rule.

  • Rule No 13

    Ball Played as It Lies

    Rule 13.1: General

    The ball must be played as it lies, except as otherwise provided in the Rules.
    (Ball at rest moved – see Rule 18)

    Rule 13.2: Improving Lie, Area of Intended Stance or Swing, or Line of Play

    A player must not improve or allow to be improved:

    • the position or lie of his ball,
    • the area of his intended stance or swing,
    • his line of play or a reasonable extension of that line beyond the hole,

    or
    • the area in which he is to drop or place a ball, by any of the following actions:
    • pressing a club on the ground,
    • moving, bending or breaking anything growing or fixed (including immovable obstructions and objects defining out of bounds),
    • creating or eliminating irregularities of surface,
    • removing or pressing down sand, loose soil, replaced divots or other cut turf placed in position, or
    • removing dew, frost or water.

    However, the player incurs no penalty if the action occurs:
    • in grounding the club lightly when addressing the ball,
    • in fairly taking his stance,
    • in making a stroke or the backward movement of his club for a stroke and the stroke is made,
    • in creating or eliminating irregularities of surface within the teeing ground (Rule 11-1) or in removing dew, frost or water from the    teeing ground, or
    • on the putting green in removing sand and loose soil or in repairing
       damage (Rule 16-1).

    Exception: Ball in hazard – see Rule 13-4.

    Rule 13.3: Building Stance

    A player is entitled to place his feet firmly in taking his stance, but he must not build a stance.

    Rule 13.4: Ball in Hazard; Prohibited Actions

    Except as provided in the Rules, before making a stroke at a ball that is in a hazard (whether a bunker or a water hazard) or that, having been lifted from a hazard, may be dropped or placed in the hazard, the player must not:

    a. Test the condition of the hazard or any similar hazard;
    b. Touch the ground in the hazard or water in the water hazard with his hand or a club; or
    c. Touch or move a loose impediment lying in or touching the hazard.

    Exceptions:
    1. Provided nothing is done that constitutes testing the condition of the hazard or improves the lie of the ball, there is no penalty if the player (a) touches the ground or loose impediments in any hazard or water in a water hazard as a result of or to prevent falling, in removing an obstruction, in measuring or in marking the position of, retrieving, lifting, placing or replacing a ball under any Rule or (b) places his clubs in a hazard.

    2. After making the stroke, if the ball is still in the hazard or has been lifted from the hazard and may be dropped or placed in the hazard, the player may smooth sand or soil in the hazard, provided nothing is done to breach Rule 13-2 with respect to his next stroke. If the ball is outside the hazard after the stroke, the player may smooth sand or soil in the hazard without restriction.

    3. If the player makes a stroke from a hazard and the ball comes to rest in another hazard, Rule 13-4a does not apply to any subsequent actions taken in the hazard from which the stroke was made. Note: At any time, including at address or in the backward movement for the stroke, the player may touch, with a club or otherwise, any obstruction, any construction declared by the Committee to be an integral part of the course or any grass, bush, tree or other growing thing.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

    (Searching for ball – see Rule 12-1)
    (Relief for ball in water hazard – see Rule 26)

  • Rule No 14

    Striking the Ball

    Rule 14.1: Ball to be Fairly Struck At

    The ball must be fairly struck at with the head of the club and must not be pushed, scraped or spooned.

    Rule 14.2: Assistance

    In making a stroke, a player must not:
    a. Accept physical assistance or protection from the elements; or
    b. Allow his caddie, his partner or his partner’s caddie to position himself on or close to an extension of the line of play or the line of putt behind the ball

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 14-1 or 14-2:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

    Rule 14.3: Artificial Devices, Unusual Equipment and Unusual Use of Equipment

    The R&A reserves the right, at any time, to change the Rules relating to artificial devices, unusual equipment and the unusual use of equipment,
    and to make or change the interpretations relating to these Rules. A player in doubt as to whether use of an item would constitute a breach of Rule 14-3 should consult the R&A.

    A manufacturer should submit to the R&A a sample of an item to be manufactured for a ruling as to whether its use during a stipulated round would cause a player to be in breach of Rule 14-3.The sample becomes the property of the R&A for reference purposes. If a manufacturer fails to submit a sample or, having submitted a sample, fails to await a ruling before manufacturing and/or marketing the item, the manufacturer assumes the risk of a ruling that use of the item would be contrary to the Rules.

    Except as provided in the Rules, during a stipulated round the player must not use any artificial device or unusual equipment, or use any equipment in an unusual manner:
    a. That might assist him in making a stroke or in his play; or
    b. For the purpose of gauging or measuring distance or conditions that might affect his play; or
    c. That might assist him in gripping the club, except that:
        (i)    plain gloves may be worn;
        (ii)   resin, powder and drying or moisturising agents may be used; and
        (iii) a towel or handkerchief may be wrapped around the grip.

    Exceptions:
    1. A player is not in breach of this Rule if (a) the equipment or device is designed for or has the effect of alleviating a medical condition, (b) the player has a legitimate medical reason to use the equipment or device, and (c) the Committee is satisfied that its use does not give the player any undue advantage over other players.
    2. A player is not in breach of this Rule if he uses equipment in a traditionally accepted manner.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 14-3:
    Disqualification.

    Note: The Committee may make a Local Rule allowing players to use devices that measure or gauge distance only.

    Rule 14.4: Striking the Ball More Than Once

    If a player’s club strikes the ball more than once in the course of a stroke, the player must count the stroke and add a penalty stroke, making two strokes in all.

    Rule 14.5: Playing Moving Ball

    A player must not make a stroke at his ball while it is moving.

    Exceptions:
    • Ball falling off tee – Rule 11-3
    • Striking the ball more than once – Rule 14-4
    • Ball moving in water – Rule 14-6

    When the ball begins to move only after the player has begun the stroke or the backward movement of his club for the stroke, he incurs no penalty under this Rule for playing a moving ball, but he is not exempt from any penalty under the following Rules:
    • Ball at rest moved by player – Rule 18-2a
    • Ball at rest moving after address – Rule 18-2b
    (Ball purposely deflected or stopped by player, partner or caddie – see Rule 1-2)

    Rule 14.5: Ball Moving in Water

    When a ball is moving in water in a water hazard, the player may, without penalty, make a stroke, but he must not delay making his stroke in order to allow the wind or current to improve the position of the ball. A ball moving in water in a water hazard may be lifted if the player elects to invoke Rule 26.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 14-5 or 14-6:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

  • Rule No 15

    Substituted Ball;Wrong Ball

    Rule 15.1: General

    A player must hole out with the ball played from the teeing ground, unless the ball is lost or out of bounds or the player substitutes another
    ball, whether or not substitution is permitted (see Rule 15-2). If a player plays a wrong ball, see Rule 15-3.

    Rule 15.2: Substituted Ball

    A player may substitute a ball when proceeding under a Rule that permits the player to play, drop or place another ball in completing the play of a hole.The substituted ball becomes the ball in play. If a player substitutes a ball when not permitted to do so under the Rules, that substituted ball is not a wrong ball; it becomes the ball in play. If the mistake is not corrected as provided in Rule 20-6 and the player makes a stroke at a wrongly substituted ball, he loses the hole in match play or incurs a penalty of two strokes in stroke play under the applicable Rule and, in stroke play, must play out the hole with the substituted ball.

    Exception: If a player incurs a penalty for making a stroke from a wrong place, there is no additional penalty for substituting a ball when not permitted.
    (Playing from wrong place – see Rule 20-7)

    Rule 15.3: Wrong Ball

    a. Match Play
    If a player makes a stroke at a wrong ball, he loses the hole. If the wrong ball belongs to another player, its owner must place a ball on the spot from which the wrong ball was first played. If the player and opponent exchange balls during the play of a hole, the first to make a stroke at a wrong ball loses the hole; when this cannot be determined, the hole must be played out with the balls exchanged. Exception: There is no penalty if a player makes a stroke at a wrong ball that is moving in water in a water hazard. Any strokes made at a wrong ball moving in water in a water hazard do not count in the player’s score. The player must correct his mistake by playing the correct ball or by proceeding under the Rules.

    b. Stroke Play
    If a competitor makes a stroke or strokes at a wrong ball, he incurs a penalty of two strokes. The competitor must correct his mistake by playing the correct ball or by proceeding under the Rules. If he fails to correct his mistake before making a stroke on the next teeing ground or, in the case of the last hole of the round, fails to declare his intention to correct his mistake before leaving the putting green, he is disqualified. Strokes made by a competitor with a wrong ball do not count in his score. If the wrong ball belongs to another competitor, its owner must place a ball on the spot from which the wrong ball was first played.

    Exception: There is no penalty if a competitor makes a stroke at a wrong ball that is moving in water in a water hazard. Any strokes made at a wrong ball moving in water in a water hazard do not count in the competitor’s score.
    (Lie of ball to be placed or replaced altered – see Rule 20-3b)
    (Spot not determinable – see Rule 20-3c)

  • Rule No 16

    The Putting Green

    Rule 16.1: General

    a.Touching Line of Putt
    The line of putt must not be touched except:
    (i) the player may remove loose impediments, provided he does not press anything down;
    (ii) the player may place the club in front of the ball when addressing it, provided he does not press anything down;
    (iii) in measuring – Rule 18-6;
    (iv) in lifting or replacing the ball – Rule 16-1b;
    (v) in pressing down a ball-marker;
    (vi) in repairing old hole plugs or ball marks on the putting green – Rule
          16-1c; and
    (vii) in removing movable obstructions – Rule 24-1.
    (Indicating line for putting on putting green – see Rule 8-2b)

    b. Lifting and Cleaning Ball
    A ball on the putting green may be lifted and, if desired, cleaned.The position of the ball must be marked before it is lifted and the ball must
    be replaced (see Rule 20-1).

    c. Repair of Hole Plugs, Ball Marks and Other Damage
    The player may repair an old hole plug or damage to the putting green caused by the impact of a ball, whether or not the player’s ball lies on the
    putting green. If a ball or ball-marker is accidentally moved in the process of the repair, the ball or ball-marker must be replaced.There is no penalty,
    provided the movement of the ball or ball-marker is directly attributable to the specific act of repairing an old hole plug or damage to the putting
    green caused by the impact of a ball. Otherwise, Rule 18 applies. Any other damage to the putting green must not be repaired if it might
    assist the player in his subsequent play of the hole.

    d.Testing Surface
    During the stipulated round, a player must not test the surface of any putting green by rolling a ball or roughening or scraping the surface.
    Exception: Between the play of two holes, a player may test the surface of any practice putting green and the putting green of the hole last played, unless the Committee has prohibited such action (see Note 2 to Rule 7-2).

    e. Standing Astride or on Line of Putt
    The player must not make a stroke on the putting green from a stance astride, or with either foot touching, the line of putt or an extension of
    that line behind the ball.

    Exception: There is no penalty if the stance is inadvertently taken on or astride the line of putt (or an extension of that line behind the ball)
    or is taken to avoid standing on another player’s line of putt or prospective line of putt.

    f. Making Stroke While Another Ball in Motion
    The player must not make a stroke while another ball is in motion after a stroke from the putting green, except that if a player does so, there is
    no penalty if it was his turn to play.
    (Lifting ball assisting or interfering with play while another ball in motion – see Rule 22)

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 16-1:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

    (Position of caddie or partner – see Rule 14-2)
    (Wrong putting green – see Rule 25-3)

    Rule 16.2: Ball Overhanging Hole

    When any part of the ball overhangs the lip of the hole, the player is allowed enough time to reach the hole without unreasonable delay and an additional ten seconds to determine whether the ball is at rest. If by then the ball has not fallen into the hole, it is deemed to be at rest. If the ball subsequently falls into the hole, the player is deemed to have holed out with his last stroke, and must add a penalty stroke to his score for the hole; otherwise, there is no penalty under this Rule.
    (Undue delay – see Rule 6-7)

  • Rule No 17

    The Flagstick

    Rule 17.1: Flagstick Attended, Removed or Held Up

    Having the flagstick attended, removed or held up to indicate the position of the hole.

    If the flagstick is not attended, removed or held up before the player makes a stroke, it must not be attended, removed or held up during the stroke or while the player’s ball is in motion if doing so might influence the movement of the ball.

    Note 1: If the flagstick is in the hole and anyone stands near it while a stroke is being made, he is deemed to be attending the flagstick.

    Note 2: If, prior to the stroke, the flagstick is attended, removed or held up by anyone with the player’s knowledge and he makes no objection, the player is deemed to have authorised it.

    Note 3: If anyone attends or holds up the flagstick while a stroke is being made, he is deemed to be attending the flagstick until the ball comes to rest.
    (Moving attended, removed or held-up flagstick while ball in motion –
    see Rule 24-1)

    Rule 17.2: Unauthorised Attendance

     If an opponent or his caddie in match play or a fellow-competitor or his caddie in stroke play, without the player’s authority or prior knowledge,
    attends, removes or holds up the flagstick during the stroke or while the ball is in motion, and the act might influence the movement of the ball, the opponent or fellow-competitor incurs the applicable penalty.

    *PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 17-1 or 17-2:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.
    *In stroke play, if a breach of Rule 17-2 occurs and the competitor’s ball subsequently strikes the flagstick, the person attending or holding it or
    anything carried by him, the competitor incurs no penalty.The ball is played as it lies, except that if the stroke was made on the putting green, the stroke is cancelled and the ball must be replaced and replayed.

    Rule 17.3: Ball Striking Flagstick or Attendant

    The player’s ball must not strike:
    a. The flagstick when it is attended, removed or held up;
    b. The person attending or holding up the flagstick or anything    carried by him; or
    c. The flagstick in the hole, unattended, when the stroke has been made on the putting green.

    Exception: When the flagstick is attended, removed or held up without the player’s authority – see Rule 17-2.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 17-3:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes and the ball must be played as it lies.

    Rule 17.4: Ball Resting Against Flagstick

    When a player’s ball rests against the flagstick in the hole and the ball is not holed, the player or another person authorised by him may move or remove the flagstick, and if the ball falls into the hole, the player is deemed to have holed out with his last stroke; otherwise, the ball, if moved, must be placed on the lip of the hole, without penalty.

  • Rule No 18

    Ball at Rest Moved

    Rule 18.1: By Outside Agency

    If a ball at rest is moved by an outside agency, there is no penalty and the ball must be replaced.

    Note: It is a question of fact whether a ball has been moved by an outside agency. In order to apply this Rule, it must be known or virtually certain that an outside agency has moved the ball. In the absence of such knowledge or certainty, the player must play the ball as it lies or, if the ball is not found, proceed under Rule 27-1. (Player’s ball at rest moved by another ball – see Rule 18-5)

    Rule 18.2: By Player, Partner, Caddie or Equipment

    a. General
    When a player’s ball is in play, if:
    (i) the player, his partner or either of their caddies lifts or moves it, touches it purposely (except with a club in the act of addressing it) or causes it to move except as permitted by a Rule, or
    (ii) equipment of the player or his partner causes the ball to move, the player incurs a penalty of one stroke. If the ball is moved, it must be replaced, unless the movement of the ball occurs after the player has begun the stroke or the backward movement of the club for the stroke and the stroke is made.

    Under the Rules there is no penalty if a player accidentally causes his ball to move in the following circumstances:
    • In searching for a ball in a hazard covered by loose impediments or sand, for a ball in an obstruction or abnormal ground condition or for a ball believed to be in water in a water hazard – Rule 12-1
    • In repairing a hole plug or ball mark – Rule 16-1c
    • In measuring – Rule 18-6
    • In lifting a ball under a Rule – Rule 20-1
    • In placing or replacing a ball under a Rule – Rule 20-3a
    • In removing a loose impediment on the putting green – Rule 23-1
    • In removing movable obstructions – Rule 24-1

    b. Ball Moving After Address
    If a player’s ball in play moves after he has addressed it (other than as a result of a stroke), the player is deemed to have moved the ball and incurs a penalty of one stroke.The ball must be replaced, unless the movement of the ball occurs after the player has begun the stroke or the backward movement of the club for the stroke and the stroke is made.

    Rule 18.3: By Opponent, Caddie or Equipment in Match Play

    a. During Search
    If, during search for a player’s ball, an opponent, his caddie or his equipment moves the ball, touches it or causes it to move, there is no penalty. If the ball is moved, it must be replaced.

    b. Other Than During Search
    If, other than during search for a player’s ball, an opponent, his caddie or his equipment moves the ball, touches it purposely or causes it to move, except as otherwise provided in the Rules, the opponent incurs a penalty of one stroke. If the ball is moved, it must be replaced.

    (Playing a wrong ball – see Rule 15-3)
    (Ball moved in measuring – see Rule 18-6)

    Rule 18.4: By Fellow-Competitor, Caddie or Equipment in Stroke Play

    If a fellow-competitor, his caddie or his equipment moves the player’s ball, touches it or causes it to move, there is no penalty. If the ball is moved,
    it must be replaced.

    (Playing a wrong ball – see Rule 15-3)

    Rule 18.5: By Another Ball

    If a ball in play and at rest is moved by another ball in motion after a stroke, the moved ball must be replaced.

    Rule 18.6: Ball Moved in Measuring

    If a ball or ball-marker is moved in measuring while proceeding under or in determining the application of a Rule, the ball or ball-marker must
    be replaced.There is no penalty, provided the movement of the ball or ball-marker is directly attributable to the specific act of measuring. Otherwise, the provisions of Rules 18-2a, 18-3b or 18-4 apply.

    *PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.
    *If a player who is required to replace a ball fails to do so, or if he makes a stroke at a ball substituted under Rule 18 when such substitution is not permitted, he incurs the general penalty for breach of Rule 18, but there is no additional penalty under this Rule.

    Note 1: If a ball to be replaced under this Rule is not immediately recoverable, another ball may be substituted.
    Note 2: If the original lie of a ball to be placed or replaced has been altered, see Rule 20-3b.
    Note 3: If it is impossible to determine the spot on which a ball is to be placed, see Rule 20-3c.

  • Rule No 19

    Ball in Motion Deflected or Stopped

    Rule 19.1: By Outside Agency

    If a player’s ball in motion is accidentally deflected or stopped by any outside agency, it is a rub of the green, there is no penalty and the ball
    must be played as it lies, except:

    a. If a player’s ball in motion after a stroke other than on the putting green comes to rest in or on any moving or animate outside agency, the ball must through the green or in a hazard be dropped, or on the putting green be placed, as near as possible to the spot directly under the place where the ball came to rest in or on the outside agency, but not nearer the hole, and
    b. If a player’s ball in motion after a stroke on the putting green is deflected or stopped by, or comes to rest in or on, any moving or animate outside agency, except a worm, insect or the like, the stroke is cancelled.The ball must be replaced and replayed.

    If the ball is not immediately recoverable, another ball may be substituted.

    Exception: Ball striking person attending or holding up flagstick or
    anything carried by him – see Rule 17-3b.

    Note: If the referee or the Committee determines that a player’s ball has been purposely deflected or stopped by an outside agency, Rule 1-4
    applies to the player. If the outside agency is a fellow-competitor or his caddie, Rule 1-2 applies to the fellow-competitor.
    (Player’s ball deflected or stopped by another ball – see Rule 19-5)

    Rule 19.2: By Player, Partner, Caddie or Equipment

    If a player’s ball is accidentally deflected or stopped by himself, his partner or either of their caddies or equipment, the player incurs a penalty of one stroke.The ball must be played as it lies, except when it comes to rest in or on the player’s, his partner’s or either of their caddies’ clothes or equipment, in which case the ball must through the green or in a hazard be dropped, or on the putting green be placed, as near as possible to the spot directly under the place where the ball came to rest in or on the article, but not nearer the hole.

    Exceptions:
    1. Ball striking person attending or holding up flagstick or anything carried by him – see Rule 17-3b.
    2. Dropped ball – see Rule 20-2a.

    (Ball purposely deflected or stopped by player, partner or caddie – see Rule 1-2)

    Rule 19.3: By Opponent, Caddie or Equipment in Match Play

    If a player’s ball is accidentally deflected or stopped by an opponent, his caddie or his equipment, there is no penalty.The player may, before another stroke is made by either side, cancel the stroke and play a ball, without penalty, as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played (Rule 20-5) or he may play the ball as it lies. However, if the player elects not to cancel the stroke and the ball has come to rest in or on the opponent’s or his caddie’s clothes or equipment, the ball must through the green or in a hazard be dropped, or on the putting green be placed, as near as possible to the spot directly under the place where the ball came to rest in or on the article, but not nearer the hole.

    Exception: Ball striking person attending or holding up flagstick or anything carried by him – see Rule 17-3b.
    (Ball purposely deflected or stopped by opponent or caddie – see Rule 1-2)

    Rule 19.4: By Fellow-Competitor, Caddie or Equipment in Stroke Play

    See Rule 19-1 regarding ball deflected by outside agency.

    Exception: Ball striking person attending or holding up flagstick or anything carried by him – see Rule 17-3b.

    Rule 19.5: By Another Ball

    a. At Rest
    If a player’s ball in motion after a stroke is deflected or stopped by a ball in play and at rest, the player must play his ball as it lies. In match play, there is no penalty. In stroke play, there is no penalty, unless both balls lay on the putting green prior to the stroke, in which case the player incurs a penalty of two strokes.

    b. In Motion
    If a player’s ball in motion after a stroke is deflected or stopped by another ball in motion after a stroke, the player must play his ball as it lies.There is no penalty, unless the player was in breach of Rule 16-1f, in which case he incurs the penalty for breach of that Rule.

    Exception: If the player’s ball is in motion after a stroke on the putting green and the other ball in motion is an outside agency – see Rule 19-1b.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

  • Rule No 20

    Lifting, Dropping and Placing; Playing from Wrong

    Rule 20.1: Lifting and Marking

    A ball to be lifted under the Rules may be lifted by the player, his partner or another person authorised by the player. In any such case, the player is responsible for any breach of the Rules. The position of the ball must be marked before it is lifted under a Rule that requires it to be replaced. If it is not marked, the player incurs a penalty of one stroke and the ball must be replaced. If it is not replaced, the player incurs the general penalty for breach of this Rule but there is no additional penalty under Rule 20-1. If a ball or ball-marker is accidentally moved in the process of lifting the ball under a Rule or marking its position, the ball or ball-marker must be replaced.There is no penalty, provided the movement of the ball or ball-marker is directly attributable to the specific act of marking the position of or lifting the ball. Otherwise, the player incurs a penalty of one stroke under this Rule or Rule 18-2a.

    Exception: If a player incurs a penalty for failing to act in accordance with Rule 5-3 or 12-2, there is no additional penalty under Rule 20-1. Note: The position of a ball to be lifted should be marked by placing a ball-marker, a small coin or other similar object immediately behind the ball. If the ball-marker interferes with the play, stance or stroke of another player, it should be placed one or more clubhead-lengths to one side.

    Rule 20.2: Dropping and Re-Dropping

    a. By Whom and How
    A ball to be dropped under the Rules must be dropped by the player himself. He must stand erect, hold the ball at shoulder height and arm’s length and drop it. If a ball is dropped by any other person or in any other manner and the error is not corrected as provided in Rule 20-6, the player incurs a penalty of one stroke.
    If the ball, when dropped, touches any person or the equipment of any player before or after it strikes a part of the course and before it comes
    to rest, the ball must be re-dropped, without penalty.There is no limit to the number of times a ball must be re-dropped in these circumstances.
    (Taking action to influence position or movement of ball – see Rule 1-2)

    b.Where to Drop
    When a ball is to be dropped as near as possible to a specific spot, it must be dropped not nearer the hole than the specific spot which, if it is not precisely known to the player, must be estimated. A ball when dropped must first strike a part of the course where the applicable Rule requires it to be dropped. If it is not so dropped, Rules 20-6 and 20-7 apply.

    c.When to Re-Drop
    A dropped ball must be re-dropped, without penalty, if it:
    (i) rolls into and comes to rest in a hazard;
    (ii) rolls out of and comes to rest outside a hazard;
    (iii) rolls onto and comes to rest on a putting green;
    (iv) rolls and comes to rest out of bounds;
    (v) rolls to and comes to rest in a position where there is interference by the condition from which relief was taken under Rule 24-2b (immovable obstruction), Rule 25-1 (abnormal ground conditions), Rule 25-3 (wrong putting green) or a Local Rule (Rule 33-8a), or rolls back into the pitch-mark from which it was lifted under Rule 25-2 (embedded ball);
    (vi) rolls and comes to rest more than two club-lengths from where it first struck a part of the course; or
    (vii) rolls and comes to rest nearer the hole than:

          (a) its original position or estimated position (see Rule 20-2b) unless otherwise permitted by the Rules; or
          (b) the nearest point of relief or maximum available relief (Rule 24-2, 25-1 or 25-3); or
          (c)  the point where the original ball last crossed the margin of the water hazard or lateral water hazard (Rule 26-1).

    If the ball when re-dropped rolls into any position listed above, it must be placed as near as possible to the spot where it first struck a part of
    the course when re-dropped.

    Note 1: If a ball when dropped or re-dropped comes to rest and subsequently moves, the ball must be played as it lies, unless the provisions of any other Rule apply.

    Note 2: If a ball to be re-dropped or placed under this Rule is not immediately recoverable, another ball may be substituted.

    Rule 20.3: Placing and Replacing

    a. By Whom and Where
    A ball to be placed under the Rules must be placed by the player or his partner. If a ball is to be replaced, the player, his partner or the person who lifted or moved it must place it on the spot from which it was lifted or moved. If the ball is placed or replaced by any other person and the error is not corrected as provided in Rule 20-6, the player incurs a penalty of one stroke. In any such case, the player is responsible for any other breach of the Rules that occurs as a result of the placing or replacing of the ball.
    If a ball or ball-marker is accidentally moved in the process of placing or replacing the ball, the ball or ball-marker must be replaced.There is no penalty, provided the movement of the ball or ball-marker is directly attributable to the specific act of placing or replacing the ball or removing the ball-marker. Otherwise, the player incurs a penalty of one stroke under Rule 18-2a or 20-1.
    If a ball to be replaced is placed other than on the spot from which it was lifted or moved and the error is not corrected as provided in Rule 20-6, the player incurs the general penalty, loss of hole in match play or two strokes in stroke play, for a breach of the applicable Rule.

    b. Lie of Ball to be Placed or Replaced Altered
    If the original lie of a ball to be placed or replaced has been altered:

    (i) except in a hazard, the ball must be placed in the nearest lie most similar to the original lie that is not more than one club-length       from the original lie, not nearer the hole and not in a hazard;
    (ii) in a water hazard, the ball must be placed in accordance with Clause (i) above, except that the ball must be placed in the       water hazard;
    (iii) in a bunker, the original lie must be re-created as nearly as possible  and the ball must be placed in that lie.

    c. Spot Not Determinable
    If it is impossible to determine the spot where the ball is to be placed or replaced:

    (i) through the green, the ball must be dropped as near as possible to the place where it lay but not in a hazard or on a putting green;
    (ii) in a hazard, the ball must be dropped in the hazard as near as possible to the place where it lay;
    (iii) on the putting green, the ball must be placed as near as possible to the place where it lay but not in a hazard.

    Exception: When resuming play (Rule 6-8d), if the spot where the ball is to be placed is impossible to determine, it must be estimated and the ball placed on the estimated spot.

    d. Ball Fails to Come to Rest on Spot
    If a ball when placed fails to come to rest on the spot on which it was placed, there is no penalty and the ball must be replaced. If it still fails to come to rest on that spot:
    (i) except in a hazard, it must be placed at the nearest spot where it can be placed at rest that is not nearer the hole and not in a hazard;
    (ii) in a hazard, it must be placed in the hazard at the nearest spot where it can be placed at rest that is not nearer the hole.
    If a ball when placed comes to rest on the spot on which it is placed, and it subsequently moves, there is no penalty and the ball must be
    played as it lies, unless the provisions of any other Rule apply.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 20-1, 20-2 or 20-3:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

    Rule 20.4: When Ball Dropped or Placed is in Play

    If the player’s ball in play has been lifted, it is again in play when dropped or placed. A substituted ball becomes the ball in play when it has been dropped or placed.

    (Ball incorrectly substituted – see Rule 15-2)
    (Lifting ball incorrectly substituted, dropped or placed – see Rule 20-6)

    Rule 20.5: Making Next Stroke from Where Previous Stroke Made

    When a player elects or is required to make his next stroke from where a previous stroke was made, he must proceed as follows:

    (a) On the Teeing Ground:The ball to be played must be played from     within the teeing ground. It may be played from anywhere within the teeing ground and may be teed.
    (b) Through the Green:The ball to be played must be dropped and when dropped must first strike a part of the course through the green.
    (c) In a Hazard:The ball to be played must be dropped and when dropped must first strike a part of the course in the hazard.
    (d) On the Putting Green:The ball to be played must be placed on the putting green.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 20-5:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

    Rule 20.6: Lifting Ball Incorrectly Substituted, Dropped or Placed

    A ball incorrectly substituted, dropped or placed in a wrong place or otherwise not in accordance with the Rules but not played may be lifted, without penalty, and the player must then proceed correctly.

    Rule 20.7: Playing from Wrong Place

    a. General
    A player has played from a wrong place if he makes a stroke at his ball in play:

    (i) on a part of the course where the Rules do not permit a stroke to be played or a ball to be dropped or placed; or
    (ii) when the Rules require a dropped ball to be re-dropped or a moved ball to be replaced.

    Note: For a ball played from outside the teeing ground or from a wrong teeing ground – see Rule 11-4.

    b. Match Play
    If a player makes a stroke from a wrong place, he loses the hole.

    c. Stroke Play
    If a competitor makes a stroke from a wrong place, he incurs a penalty of two strokes under the applicable Rule. He must play out the hole with the
    ball played from the wrong place, without correcting his error, provided he has not committed a serious breach (see Note 1).
    If a competitor becomes aware that he has played from a wrong place and believes that he may have committed a serious breach, he must, before
    making a stroke on the next teeing ground, play out the hole with a second ball played in accordance with the Rules. If the hole being played is the last
    hole of the round, he must declare, before leaving the putting green, that he will play out the hole with a second ball played in accordance with the
    Rules.
    If the competitor has played a second ball, he must report the facts to the Committee before returning his score card; if he fails to do so, he is disqualified.The Committee must determine whether the competitor has committed a serious breach of the applicable Rule. If he has, the score
    with the second ball counts and the competitor must add two penalty strokes to his score with that ball. If the competitor has committed a serious
    breach and has failed to correct it as outlined above, he is disqualified.

    Note 1: A competitor is deemed to have committed a serious breach of the applicable Rule if the Committee considers he has gained a significant
    advantage as a result of playing from a wrong place.

    Note 2: If a competitor plays a second ball under Rule 20-7c and it is ruled not to count, strokes made with that ball and penalty strokes incurred
    solely by playing that ball are disregarded. If the second ball is ruled to count, the stroke made from the wrong place and any strokes subsequently
    taken with the original ball including penalty strokes incurred solely by playing that ball are disregarded.

    Note 3: If a player incurs a penalty for making a stroke from a wrong place, there is no additional penalty for substituting a ball when not permitted.

  • Rule No 21

    Cleaning Ball

    Rule 21.1: Cleaning Ball

    A ball on the putting green may be cleaned when lifted under Rule 16-1b. Elsewhere, a ball may be cleaned when lifted, except when it has been lifted:

    a. To determine if it is unfit for play (Rule 5-3);
    b. For identification (Rule 12-2), in which case it may be cleaned only
         to the extent necessary for identification; or
    c. Because it is assisting or interfering with play (Rule 22).

    If a player cleans his ball during play of a hole except as provided in this Rule, he incurs a penalty of one stroke and the ball, if lifted, must be replaced.
    If a player who is required to replace a ball fails to do so, he incurs the general penalty under the applicable Rule, but there is no additional penalty under Rule 21.

    Exception: If a player incurs a penalty for failing to act in accordance with Rule 5-3, 12-2 or 22, there is no additional penalty under Rule 21.

  • Rule No 22

    Ball Assisting or Interfering with Play

    Rule 22.1: Ball Assisting Play

    Except when a ball is in motion, if a player considers that a ball might assist any other player, he may:

    a. Lift the ball if it is his ball; or
    b. Have any other ball lifted.

    A ball lifted under this Rule must be replaced (see Rule 20-3).The ball must not be cleaned, unless it lies on the putting green (see Rule 21).
    In stroke play, a player required to lift his ball may play first rather than lift the ball. In stroke play, if the Committee determines that competitors have agreed not to lift a ball that might assist any competitor, they are disqualified.

    Rule 22.2: Ball Interfering with Play

    Except when a ball is in motion, if a player considers that another ball ight interfere with his play, he may have it lifted. A ball lifted under this Rule must be replaced (see Rule 20-3).The ball must not be cleaned, unless it lies on the putting green (see Rule 21). In stroke play, a player required to lift his ball may play first rather than lift the ball.

    Note: Except on the putting green, a player may not lift his ball solely because he considers that it might interfere with the play of another player. If a player lifts his ball without being asked to do so, he incurs a penalty of one stroke for a breach of Rule 18-2a, but there is no additional penalty under Rule 22.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes

  • Rule No 23

    Loose Impediments

    Rule 23.1: Relief

    Except when both the loose impediment and the ball lie in or touch the same hazard, any loose impediment may be removed without penalty.
    If the ball lies anywhere other than on the putting green and the removal of a loose impediment by the player causes the ball to move,
    Rule 18-2a applies. On the putting green, if the ball or ball-marker is accidentally moved in the process of the player removing a loose impediment, the ball or ball-marker must be replaced.There is no penalty, provided the movement of the ball or ball-marker is directly attributable to the removal of the
    loose impediment. Otherwise, if the player causes the ball to move, he incurs a penalty of one stroke under Rule 18-2a.

    When a ball is in motion, a loose impediment that might influence the movement of the ball must not be removed.

    Note: If the ball lies in a hazard, the player must not touch or move any loose impediment lying in or touching the same hazard – see Rule 13-4c.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

    (Searching for ball in hazard – see Rule 12-1)
    (Touching line of putt – see Rule 16-1a)

  • Rule No 24

    Obstructions

    Rule 24.1: Movable Obstruction

    A player may take relief, without penalty, from a movable obstruction as follows:

    a. If the ball does not lie in or on the obstruction, the obstruction may be removed. If the ball moves, it must be replaced, and there is no penalty, provided that the movement of the ball is directly attributable to the removal of the obstruction. Otherwise, Rule 18-2a applies.

    b. If the ball lies in or on the obstruction, the ball may be lifted and the obstruction removed.The ball must through the green or in a hazard be dropped, or on the putting green be placed, as near as possible to the spot directly under the place where the ball lay in or on the obstruction, but not nearer the hole. The ball may be cleaned when lifted under this Rule.
    When a ball is in motion, an obstruction that might influence the movement of the ball, other than equipment of any player or the flagstick when attended, removed or held up, must not be moved. (Exerting influence on ball – see Rule 1-2)

    Note: If a ball to be dropped or placed under this Rule is not immediately recoverable, another ball may be substituted.

    Rule 24.2: Immovable Obstruction

    a. Interference
    Interference by an immovable obstruction occurs when a ball lies in or on the obstruction, or when the obstruction interferes with the player’s stance or the area of his intended swing. If the player’s ball lies on the putting green, interference also occurs if an immovable obstruction on the putting green intervenes on his line of putt. Otherwise, intervention on the line of play is not, of itself, interference under this Rule.

    b. Relief
    Except when the ball is in a water hazard or a lateral water hazard, a player may take relief from interference by an immovable obstruction as follows:

    (i) Through the Green: If the ball lies through the green, the player must lift the ball and drop it, without penalty, within one club-length of and not nearer the hole than the nearest point of relief.The nearest point of relief must not be in a hazard or on a putting green. When the ball is dropped within one club-length of the nearest point of relief, the ball must first strike a part of the course at a spot that avoids interference by the immovable obstruction and is not in a hazard and not on a putting green.

    (ii) In a Bunker: If the ball is in a bunker, the player must lift the ball and drop it either:
          (a) Without penalty, in accordance with Clause (i) above, except that the nearest point of relief must be in the bunker and the ball must be dropped in the bunker; or
          (b) Under penalty of one stroke, outside the bunker keeping the point where the ball lay directly between the hole and the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how far behind the bunker the ball may be dropped.

    (iii) On the Putting Green: If the ball lies on the putting green, the player must lift the ball and place it, without penalty, at the nearest point of relief that is not in a hazard. The nearest point of relief may be off the putting green.

    (iv) On the Teeing Ground: If the ball lies on the teeing ground, the player must lift the ball and drop it, without penalty, in accordance with Clause (i) above.

    The ball may be cleaned when lifted under this Rule. (Ball rolling to a position where there is interference by the condition from which relief was taken – see Rule 20-2c(v))

    Exception: A player may not take relief under this Rule if (a) it is clearly unreasonable for him to make a stroke because of interference by anything other than an immovable obstruction or (b) interference by an immovable obstruction would occur only through use of an unnecessarily abnormal stance, swing or direction of play.

    Note 1: If a ball is in a water hazard (including a lateral water hazard), the player may not take relief from interference by an immovable obstruction.
    The player must play the ball as it lies or proceed under Rule 26-1.

    Note 2: If a ball to be dropped or placed under this Rule is not immediately recoverable, another ball may be substituted.

    Note 3: The Committee may make a Local Rule stating that the player must determine the nearest point of relief without crossing over, through or under the obstruction.

    Rule 24.3: Ball in Obstruction Not Found

    It is a question of fact whether a ball that has not been found after having been struck toward an obstruction is in the obstruction. In order to apply this Rule, it must be known or virtually certain that the ball is in the obstruction. In the absence of such knowledge or certainty, the player must proceed under Rule 27-1

    a. Ball in Movable Obstruction Not Found
    If it is known or virtually certain that a ball that has not been found is in a movable obstruction, the player may substitute another ball and take relief, without penalty, under this Rule. If he elects to do so, he must remove the obstruction and through the green or in a hazard drop a ball, or on the putting green place a ball, as near as possible to the spot directly under the place where the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the movable obstruction, but not nearer the hole.

    b. Ball in Immovable Obstruction Not Found
    If it is known or virtually certain that a ball that has not been found is in an immovable obstruction, the player may take relief under this Rule. If he elects to do so, the spot where the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the obstruction must be determined and, for the purpose of applying this Rule, the ball is deemed to lie at this spot and the player must proceed as follows:

    (i) Through the Green: If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the immovable obstruction at a spot through the green, the player may substitute another ball, without penalty, and take relief as prescribed in Rule 24-2b(i).
    (ii) In a Bunker: If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the immovable obstruction at a spot in a bunker, the player may substitute another ball, without penalty, and take relief as prescribed in Rule 24-2b(ii).
    (iii) In a Water Hazard (including a Lateral Water Hazard): If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the immovable obstruction at a spot in a water hazard, the player is not entitled to relief without penalty.The player must proceed under Rule 26-1.
    (iv) On the Putting Green: If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the immovable obstruction at a spot on the putting green, the player may substitute another ball, without penalty, and take relief as prescribed in Rule 24-2b(iii).

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

  • Rule No 25

    Abnormal Ground Conditions,Embedded Ball and Wrong Putting Green

    Rule 25.1: Abnormal Ground Conditions

    a. Interference
    Interference by an abnormal ground condition occurs when a ball lies in or touches the condition or when the condition interferes with the player’s
    stance or the area of his intended swing. If the player’s ball lies on the putting green, interference also occurs if an abnormal ground condition on
    the putting green intervenes on his line of putt. Otherwise, intervention on the line of play is not, of itself, interference under this Rule.

    Note: The Committee may make a Local Rule stating that interference by an abnormal ground condition with a player’s stance is deemed not
    to be, of itself, interference under this Rule.

    b. Relief
    Except when the ball is in a water hazard or a lateral water hazard, a player may take relief from interference by an abnormal ground condition as follows:
    (i) Through the Green: If the ball lies through the green, the player must lift the ball and drop it, without penalty, within one club-length of and not nearer the hole than the nearest point of relief.The nearest point of relief must not be in a hazard or on a putting green. When the ball is dropped within one club-length of the nearest point of relief, the ball must first strike a part of the course at a spot that avoids interference by the condition and is not in a hazard and not on a putting green.
    (ii) In a Bunker: If the ball is in a bunker, the player must lift the ball and drop it either:

          (a) Without penalty, in accordance with Clause (i) above, except that the nearest point of relief must be in the bunker and the ball must be dropped in the bunker or, if complete relief is impossible, as near as possible to the spot where the ball lay, but not nearer the hole, on a part of the course in the bunker that affords maximum available relief from the condition; or

          (b) Under penalty of one stroke, outside the bunker keeping the point where the ball lay directly between the hole and the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how far behind the bunker the ball may be dropped.

    (iii) On the Putting Green: If the ball lies on the putting green, the player must lift the ball and place it, without penalty, at the nearest point of relief that is not in a hazard or, if complete relief is impossible, at the nearest position to where it lay that affords maximum available relief from the condition, but not nearer the hole and not in a hazard.The nearest point of relief or maximum available relief may be off the putting green.

    (iv) On the Teeing Ground: If the ball lies on the teeing ground, the player must lift the ball and drop it, without penalty, in accordance with Clause (i) above. The ball may be cleaned when lifted under Rule 25-1b.
    (Ball rolling to a position where there is interference by the condition from which relief was taken – see Rule 20-2c(v))

    Exception: A player may not take relief under this Rule if (a) it is clearly unreasonable for him to make a stroke because of interference by anything other than an abnormal ground condition or (b) interference by an abnormal ground condition would occur only through use of an unnecessarily abnormal stance, swing or direction of play. Note 1: If a ball is in a water hazard (including a lateral water hazard), the player is not entitled to relief, without penalty, from interference by an abnormal ground condition.The player must play the ball as it lies (unless prohibited by Local Rule) or proceed under Rule 26-1.
    Note 2: If a ball to be dropped or placed under this Rule is not immediately recoverable, another ball may be substituted.

    c. Ball in Abnormal Ground Condition Not Found
    It is a question of fact whether a ball that has not been found after having been struck toward an abnormal ground condition is in such a condition. In order to apply this Rule, it must be known or virtually certain that the ball is in the abnormal ground condition. In the absence of such knowledge or certainty, the player must proceed under Rule 27-1. If it is known or virtually certain that a ball that has not been found is in an abnormal ground condition, the player may take relief under this Rule. If he elects to do so, the spot where the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the abnormal ground condition must be determined and, for the purpose of applying this Rule, the ball is deemed to lie at this spot and the player must proceed as follows:
    (i) Through the Green: If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the abnormal ground condition at a spot through the green, the player may substitute another ball, without penalty, and take relief as prescribed in Rule 25-1b(i).
    (ii) In a Bunker: If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the abnormal ground condition at a spot in a bunker, the player may substitute another ball, without penalty, and take relief as prescribed in Rule 25-1b(ii).
    (iii) In a Water Hazard (including a Lateral Water Hazard): If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the abnormal ground condition at a spot in a water hazard, the player is not entitled to relief without penalty.The player must proceed under Rule 26-1.
    (iv) On the Putting Green: If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the abnormal ground condition at a spot on the putting green, the player may substitute another ball, without penalty, and take relief as prescribed in Rule 25-1b(iii).

    Rule 25.2: Embedded Ball

    A ball embedded in its own pitch-mark in the ground in any closely-mown area through the green may be lifted, cleaned and dropped, without penalty, as near as possible to the spot where it lay but not nearer the hole.The ball when dropped must first strike a part of the course through the green. “Closely-mown area” means any area of the course, including paths through the rough, cut to fairway height or less.

    Rule 25.3: Wrong Putting Green

    a. Interference
    Interference by a wrong putting green occurs when a ball is on the wrong putting green. Interference to a player’s stance or the area of his intended swing is not, of itself, interference under this Rule.

    b. Relief
    If a player’s ball lies on a wrong putting green, he must not play the ball as it lies. He must take relief, without penalty, as follows:

    The player must lift the ball and drop it within one club-length of and not nearer the hole than the nearest point of relief.The nearest point of relief must not be in a hazard or on a putting green. When dropping the ball within one club-length of the nearest point of relief, the ball must first strike a part of the course at a spot that avoids interference by the wrong putting green and is not in a hazard and not on a putting green.The ball may be cleaned when lifted under this Rule.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

  • Rule No 26

    Water Hazards (Including Lateral Water Hazards)

    Rule 26.1: Relief for Ball in Water Hazard

    It is a question of fact whether a ball that has not been found after having been struck toward a water hazard is in the hazard. In order to apply this Rule, it must be known or virtually certain that the ball is in the hazard. In the absence of such knowledge or certainty, the player must proceed under Rule 27-1.

    If a ball is in a water hazard or if it is known or virtually certain that a ball that has not been found is in a water hazard (whether the ball lies in water or not), the player may 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 water hazard, keeping the point at which the original ball last crossed the margin of the water hazard directly between the hole and the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how far behind the water hazard the ball may be dropped; or

    c. As additional options available only if the ball last crossed the margin of a lateral water hazard, drop a ball outside the water hazard within two club-lengths of and not nearer the hole than (i) the point where the original ball last crossed the margin of the water hazard or (ii) a point on the opposite margin of the water hazard equidistant from the hole.

    When proceeding under this Rule, the player may lift and clean his ball or substitute a ball.

    (Prohibited actions when ball is in a hazard – see Rule 13-4)
    (Ball moving in water in a water hazard – see Rule 14-6)

    Rule 26.2: Ball Played Within Water Hazard

    a. Ball Comes to Rest in Same or Another Water Hazard
    If a ball played from within a water hazard comes to rest in the same or another water hazard after the stroke, the player may:

    (i) proceed under Rule 26-1a. If, after dropping in the hazard, the player elects not to play the dropped ball, he may:
          (a) proceed under Rule 26-1b, or if applicable Rule 26-1c, adding the additional penalty of one stroke prescribed by the Rule and using as the reference point the point where the original ball last crossed the margin of this hazard before it came to rest in this hazard; or
          (b) add an additional penalty of one stroke and play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the last stroke from outside a water hazard was made (see Rule 20-5); or

    (ii) proceed under Rule 26-1b, or if applicable Rule 26-1c; or

    (iii) under penalty of one stroke, play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the last stroke from outside a water hazard was made (see Rule 20-5).

    b. Ball Lost or Unplayable Outside Hazard or Out of Bounds

    If a ball played from within a water hazard is lost or deemed unplayable outside the hazard or is out of bounds, the player may, after taking a
    penalty of one stroke under Rule 27-1 or 28a:

    (i) play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot in the hazard from which the original ball was last played (see Rule 20-5); or

    (ii) proceed under Rule 26-1b, or if applicable Rule 26-1c, adding the additional penalty of one stroke prescribed by the Rule and using as the reference point the point where the original ball last crossed the margin of the hazard before it came to rest in the hazard; or

    (iii) add an additional penalty of one stroke and play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the last stroke from outside a water
          hazard was made (see Rule 20-5).

  • Rule No 27

    Ball Lost or Out of Bounds;Provisional Ball

    Rule 27.1: Stroke and Distance; Ball Out of Bounds; Ball Not Found Within Five Minutes

    a. Proceeding Under Stroke and Distance
    At any time, a player may, under penalty of one stroke, play a ball as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played
    (see Rule 20-5), i.e. proceed under penalty of stroke and distance. Except as otherwise provided in the Rules, if a player makes a stroke at a ball from the spot at which the original ball was last played, he is deemed to have proceeded under penalty of stroke and distance.

    b. Ball Out of Bounds
    If a ball is out of bounds, the player must play a ball, under penalty of one stroke, as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played (see Rule 20-5).

    c. Ball Not Found Within Five Minutes
    If a ball is lost as a result of not being 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, the player must play a ball, under penalty of one stroke, as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played (see Rule 20-5).

    Exceptions:

    1. If it is known or virtually certain that the original ball that has not been found is in an obstruction (Rule 24-3) or is in an abnormal ground condition
    (Rule 25-1c), the player may proceed under the applicable Rule.

    2. If it is known or virtually certain that the original ball that has not been found has been moved by an outside agency (Rule 18-1) or is in a water hazard (Rule 26-1), the player must proceed under the applicable Rule.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 27-1:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

    Rule 27.2: Provisional Ball

    a. Procedure
    If a ball may be lost outside a water hazard or may be out of bounds, to save time the player may play another ball provisionally in accordance
    with Rule 27-1.The player must inform his opponent in match play or his marker or a fellow-competitor in stroke play that he intends to play a
    provisional ball, and he must play it before he or his partner goes forward to search for the original ball.

    If he fails to do so and plays another ball, that ball is not a provisional ball and becomes the ball in play under penalty of stroke and distance
    (Rule 27-1); the original ball is lost. (Order of play from teeing ground – see Rule 10-3)

    Note: If a provisional ball played under Rule 27-2a might be lost outside a water hazard or out of bounds, the player may play another provisional ball. If another provisional ball is played, it bears the same relationship to the previous provisional ball as the first provisional ball bears to the original ball.

    b.When Provisional Ball Becomes Ball in Play
    The player may play a provisional ball until he reaches the place where the original ball is likely to be. If he makes a stroke with the provisional ball from the place where the original ball is likely to be or from a point nearer the hole than that place, the original ball is lost and the provisional ball becomes the ball in play under penalty of stroke and distance (Rule 27-1).

    If the original ball is lost outside a water hazard or is out of bounds, the provisional ball becomes the ball in play, under penalty of stroke and
    distance
    (Rule 27-1).

    If it is known or virtually certain that the original ball is in a water hazard, the player must proceed in accordance with Rule 26-1.

    Exception: If it is known or virtually certain that the original ball is in an obstruction (Rule 24-3) or an abnormal ground condition (Rule 25-1c), the player may proceed under the applicable Rule.

    c.When Provisional Ball to be Abandoned
    If the original ball is neither lost nor out of bounds, the player must abandon the provisional ball and continue play with the original ball. If he makes any further strokes at the provisional ball, he is playing a wrong ball and the provisions of Rule 15-3 apply.

    Note: If a player plays a provisional ball under Rule 27-2a, the strokes made after this Rule has been invoked with a provisional ball subsequently abandoned under Rule 27-2c and penalty strokes incurred solely by playing that ball are disregarded.

  • Rule No 28

    Ball Unplayable

    Rule 28.1: General

    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 hole and 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.

    If the unplayable ball is in a bunker, the player may proceed under Clause a, b or c. If he elects to proceed under Clause b or c, a ball must be dropped in the bunker.

    When proceeding under this Rule, the player may lift and clean his ball or substitute a ball.

    PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE:
    Match play – Loss of hole; Stroke play – Two strokes.

  • Rule No 29

    Threesomes and Foursomes

    Rule 29.1: General

    In a threesome or a foursome, during any stipulated round the partners must play alternately from the teeing grounds and alternately during the
    play of each hole. Penalty strokes do not affect the order of play.

    Rule 29.2: Match Play

     Match Play

    If a player plays when his partner should have played, his side loses the hole.

    Rule 29.3: Stroke Play

    If the partners make a stroke or strokes in incorrect order, such stroke or strokes are cancelled and the side incurs a penalty of two strokes. The side must correct the error by playing a ball in correct order as nearly as possible at the spot from which it first played in incorrect order (see Rule 20-5). If the side makes a stroke on the next teeing ground without first correcting the error or, in the case of the last hole of the round, leaves the putting green without declaring its intention to correct the error, the side is disqualified.

  • Rule No 30

    Three-Ball, Best-Ball and Four-Ball Match Play

    Rule 30.1: Rules of Golf Apply

    The Rules of Golf, so far as they are not at variance with the following specific Rules, apply to three-ball, best-ball and four-ball matches.

    Rule 30.2: Three-Ball Match Play

    a. Ball at Rest Moved by an Opponent

    Except as otherwise provided in the Rules, if the player’s ball is touched or moved by an opponent, his caddie or equipment other than during
    search, Rule 18-3b applies.That opponent incurs a penalty of one stroke in his match with the player, but not in his match with the other opponent.

    b. Ball Deflected or Stopped by an Opponent Accidentally

    If a player’s ball is accidentally deflected or stopped by an opponent, his caddie or equipment, there is no penalty. In his match with that opponent the player may, before another stroke is made by either side, cancel the stroke and play a ball, without penalty, as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played (see Rule 20-5) or he may play the ball as it lies. In his match with the other opponent, the ball must be played as it lies.

    Exception: Ball striking person attending or holding up flagstick or anything carried by him – see Rule 17-3b. (Ball purposely deflected or stopped by opponent – see Rule 1-2)

    Rule 30.3: Best-Ball and Four-Ball Match Play

    a. Representation of Side

    A side may be represented by one partner for all or any part of a match; all partners need not be present. An absent partner may join a match between holes, but not during play of a hole.

    b. Order of Play

    Balls belonging to the same side may be played in the order the side considers best.

    c.Wrong Ball
    If a player incurs the loss of hole penalty under Rule 15-3a for making a stroke at a wrong ball, he is disqualified for that hole, but his partner incurs no penalty even if the wrong ball belongs to him. If the wrong ball belongs to another player, its owner must place a ball on the spot from which the wrong ball was first played.

    d. Penalty to Side
    A side is penalised for a breach of any of the following by any partner:
    • Rule 4                  Clubs
    • Rule 6-4                Caddie
    • Any Local Rule or Condition of Competition for which the penalty is an adjustment to the state of the match.

    e. Disqualification of Side
    (i) A side is disqualified if any partner incurs a penalty of disqualification       under any of the following:
    • Rule 1-3                     Agreement to Waive Rules
    • Rule 4                        Clubs
    • Rule 5-1 or 5-2          The Ball
    • Rule 6-2a                   Handicap
    • Rule 6-4                     Caddie
    • Rule 6-7                     Undue Delay; Slow Play
    • Rule 11-1                  Teeing
    • Rule 14-3                  Artificial Devices, Unusual Equipment and Unusual Use of Equipment
    • Rule 33-7                  Disqualification Penalty Imposed by Committee

    (ii) A side is disqualified if all partners incur a penalty of disqualification under any of the following:
    • Rule 6-3                   Time of Starting and Groups
    • Rule 6-8                   Discontinuance of Play

    (iii) In all other cases where a breach of a Rule would result in disqualification, the player is disqualified for that hole only.

    f. Effect of Other Penalties
    If a player’s breach of a Rule assists his partner’s play or adversely affects an opponent’s play, the partner incurs the applicable penalty in addition to any penalty incurred by the player. In all other cases where a player incurs a penalty for breach of a Rule, the penalty does not apply to his partner. Where the penalty is stated to be loss of hole, the effect is to disqualify the player for that hole.

  • Rule No 31

    Four-Ball Stroke Play

    Rule 31.1: General

    The Rules of Golf, so far as they are not at variance with the following specific Rules, apply to four-ball stroke play.

    Rule 31.2: Representation of Side

    A side may be represented by either partner for all or any part of a stipulated round; both partners need not be present. An absent competitor
    may join his partner between holes, but not during play of a hole.

    Rule 31.3: Scoring

    The marker is required to record for each hole only the gross score of whichever partner’s score is to count.The gross scores to count must
    be individually identifiable; otherwise, the side is disqualified. Only one of the partners need be responsible for complying with Rule 6-6b.
    (Wrong score – see Rule 31-7a)

    Rule 31.4: Order of Play

    Balls belonging to the same side may be played in the order the side considers best.

    Rule 31.5: Wrong Ball

    If a competitor is in breach of Rule 15-3b for making a stroke at a wrong ball, he incurs a penalty of two strokes and must correct his mistake by
    playing the correct ball or by proceeding under the Rules. His partner incurs no penalty, even if the wrong ball belongs to him.
    If the wrong ball belongs to another competitor, its owner must place a ball on the spot from which the wrong ball was first played.

    Rule 31.6: Penalty To Side

    A side to Penalised   for a breach of any of the following by any partner:
    • Rule 4          Clubs
    • Rule 6-4        Caddie

    • Any Local Rule or Condition of Competition for which there is a   maximum penalty per round.

    Rule 31.7: Disqualification Penalties

    A side is Disqualified from the competition. if either partner incurs a penalty of disqualification under any of the following:
    • Rule 1-3            Agreement to Waive Rules
    • Rule 3-4            Refusal to Comply with a Rule
    • Rule 4               Clubs
    • Rule 5-1 or 5-2 The Ball
    • Rule 6-2b           Handicap
    • Rule 6-4            Caddie
    • Rule 6-6b           Signing and Returning Score Card
    • Rule 6-6d           Wrong Score for Hole
    • Rule 6-7            Undue Delay; Slow Play
    • Rule 7-1            Practice Before or Between Rounds
    • Rule 11-1           Teeing
    • Rule 14-3           Artificial Devices, Unusual Equipment and Unusual Use of Equipment
    • Rule 22-1           Ball Assisting Play
    • Rule 31-3           Gross Scores to Count Not Individually Identifiable
    • Rule 33-7           Disqualification Penalty Imposed by Committee

    b. Breach by Both Partners
    A side is disqualified from the competition:
    (i) if each partner incurs a penalty of disqualification for a breach of Rule 6-3 (Time of Starting and Groups) or Rule 6-8 (Discontinuance of Play), or
    (ii) if, at the same hole, each partner is in breach of a Rule the penalty for which is disqualification from the competition or for a hole.


    c. For the Hole Only
    In all other cases where a breach of a Rule would result in disqualification, the competitor is disqualified only for the hole at which the breach occurred.

    Rule 31.8: Effect of Other Penalties

    If a competitor’s breach of a Rule assists his partner’s play, the partner incurs the applicable penalty in addition to any penalty incurred by
    the competitor.

    In all other cases where a competitor incurs a penalty for breach of a Rule, the penalty does not apply to his partner.

  • Rule No 32

    Bogey, Par and Stableford Competitions

    Rule 32.1: Conditions

    Bogey, Par and Stableford competitions are forms of stroke play in which play is against a fixed score at each hole.The Rules for stroke play, so far
    as they are not at variance with the following specific Rules, apply. In handicap bogey, par and Stableford competitions, the competitor with the lowest net score at a hole takes the honour at the next teeing ground.

    a. Bogey and Par Competitions
    The scoring for bogey and par competitions is made as in match play. Any hole for which a competitor makes no return is regarded as a loss.
    The winner is the competitor who is most successful in the aggregate of holes. The marker is responsible for marking only the gross number of strokes for each hole where the competitor makes a net score equal to or less than the fixed score.

    Note 1: The competitor’s score is adjusted by deducting a hole or holes under the applicable Rule when a penalty other than disqualification is
    incurred under any of the following:
    • Rule 4                 Clubs
    • Rule 6-4               Caddie
    • Any Local Rule or Condition of Competition for which there is a maximum penalty per round.

    The competitor is responsible for reporting the facts regarding such a breach to the Committee before he returns his score card so that the Committee may apply the penalty. If the competitor fails to report his breach to the Committee, he is disqualified.

    Note 2: If the competitor is in breach of Rule 6-7 (Undue Delay; Slow Play), the Committee will deduct one hole from the aggregate of holes.
    For a repeated offence, see Rule 32-2a.

    b. Stableford Competitions
    The scoring in Stableford competitions is made by points awarded in relation to a fixed score at each hole as follows:

    Hole Played In . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Points
    More than one over fixed score or no score returned . . . . . . . . . . . . 0
    One over fixed score . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
    Fixed score . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
    One under fixed score . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
    Two under fixed score . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
    Three under fixed score . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
    Four under fixed score . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

    The winner is the competitor who scores the highest number of points. The marker is responsible for marking only the gross number of strokes
    at each hole where the competitor’s net score earns one or more points.

    Note 1: If a competitor is in breach of a Rule for which there is a maximum penalty per round, he must report the facts to the Committee before returning his score card; if he fails to do so, he is disqualified.The Committee will, from the total points scored for the round, deduct two points for each hole at which any breach occurred, with a maximum deduction per round of four points for each Rule breached.

    Note 2: If the competitor is in breach of Rule 6-7 (Undue Delay; Slow Play), the Committee will deduct two points from the total points scored for the round. For a repeated offence, see Rule 32-2a.

    Rule 32.2: Disqualification Penalties

    a. From the Competition
    A competitor is disqualified from the competition if he incurs a penalty of disqualification under any of the following:
    • Rule 1-3            Agreement to Waive Rules
    • Rule 3-4            Refusal to Comply with a Rule
    • Rule 4              Clubs
    • Rule 5-1 or 5-2 The Ball
    • Rule 6-2b           Handicap
    • Rule 6-3            Time of Starting and Groups
    • Rule 6-4            Caddie
    • Rule 6-6b           Signing and Returning Score Card
    • Rule 6-6d           Wrong Score for Hole, i.e. when the recorded score is lower than actually taken, except that no penalty is incurred when a breach of this Rule does not affect the result of the hole
    • Rule 6-7            Undue Delay; Slow Play
    • Rule 6-8            Discontinuance of Play
    • Rule 7-1            Practice Before or Between Rounds
    • Rule 11-1          Teeing
    • Rule 14-3          Artificial Devices, Unusual Equipment and Unusual Use of Equipment
    • Rule 22-1          Ball Assisting Play
    • Rule 33-7          Disqualification Penalty Imposed by Committee

    b. For a Hole
    In all other cases where a breach of a Rule would result in disqualification, the competitor is disqualified only for the hole at which the breach
    occurred.

  • Rule No 33

    The Committee

    Rule 33.1: Conditions;Waiving Rule

    The Committee must establish the conditions under which a competition is to be played.

    The Committee has no power to waive a Rule of Golf. Certain specific Rules governing stroke play are so substantially different from those governing match play that combining the two forms of play is not practicable and is not permitted.The result of a match played in these circumstances is null and void and, in the stroke play competition, the competitors are disqualified.

    In stroke play, the Committee may limit a referee’s duties.

    Rule 33.2: The Course

    a. Defining Bounds and Margins
    The Committee must define accurately:
    (i) the course and out of bounds,
    (ii) the margins of water hazards and lateral water hazards,
    (iii) ground under repair, and
    (iv) obstructions and integral parts of the course.

    b. New Holes
    New holes should be made on the day on which a stroke play competition begins and at such other times as the Committee considers necessary, provided all competitors in a single round play with each hole cut in the same position.

    Exception: When it is impossible for a damaged hole to be repaired so that it conforms with the Definition, the Committee may make a
    new hole in a nearby similar position.

    Note: Where a single round is to be played on more than one day, the Committee may provide, in the conditions of a competition (Rule 33-1),
    that the holes and teeing grounds may be differently situated on each day of the competition, provided that, on any one day, all competitors play
    with each hole and each teeing ground in the same position.

    c. Practice Ground
    Where there is no practice ground available outside the area of a competition course, the Committee should establish the area on which players may practise on any day of a competition, if it is practicable to do so. On any day of a stroke play competition, the Committee should not normally permit practice on or to a putting green or from a hazard of the competition course.

    d. Course Unplayable
    If the Committee or its authorised representative considers that for any reason the course is not in a playable condition or that there are circumstances that render the proper playing of the game impossible, it may, in match play or stroke play, order a temporary suspension of play or, in stroke play, declare play null and void and cancel all scores for the round in question. When a round is cancelled, all penalties incurred in that round are cancelled.
    (Procedure in discontinuing and resuming play – see Rule 6-8)

    Rule 33.3: Times of Starting and Groups

    The Committee must establish the times of starting and, in stroke play, arrange the groups in which competitors must play.

    When a match play competition is played over an extended period, the Committee establishes the limit of time within which each round must be completed. When players are allowed to arrange the date of their match within these limits, the Committee should announce that the match must be played at a stated time on the last day of the period, unless the players agree to a prior date.

    Rule 33.4: Handicap Stroke Table

    The Committee must publish a table indicating the order of holes at which handicap strokes are to be given or received.

    Rule 33.5: Score Card

    In stroke play, the Committee must provide each competitor with a score card containing the date and the competitor’s name or, in foursome or four-ball stroke play, the competitors’ names. In stroke play, the Committee is responsible for the addition of scores and application of the handicap recorded on the score card.

    In four-ball stroke play, the Committee is responsible for recording the better-ball score for each hole and in the process applying the handicaps
    recorded on the score card, and adding the better-ball scores. In bogey, par and Stableford competitions, the Committee is responsible for applying the handicap recorded on the score card and determining the result of each hole and the overall result or points total.

    Note: The Committee may request that each competitor records the date and his name on his score card.

    Rule 33.6: Decision of Ties

    The Committee must announce the manner, day and time for the decision of a halved match or of a tie, whether played on level terms or under handicap.

    A halved match must not be decided by stroke play. A tie in stroke play must not be decided by a match.

    Rule 33.7: Disqualification Penalty; Committee Discretion

    A penalty of disqualification may in exceptional individual cases be waived, modified or imposed if the Committee considers such action warranted.
    Any penalty less than disqualification must not be waived or modified. If a Committee considers that a player is guilty of a serious breach of etiquette, it may impose a penalty of disqualification under this Rule.

    Rule 33.8: Local Rules

    a. Policy
    The Committee may establish Local Rules for local abnormal conditions if they are consistent with the policy set forth in Appendix I.

    b.Waiving or Modifying a Rule
    A Rule of Golf must not be waived by a Local Rule. However, if a Committee considers that local abnormal conditions interfere with the proper playing of the game to the extent that it is necessary to make a Local Rule that modifies the Rules of Golf, the Local Rule must be authorised by the R&A.

  • Rule No 0

    General Quiz section

    Rule 0.1: European Tour - Open Championship

    Stewart Cink claimed his first major title as Tom Watson missed out on the chance to create history in dramatic 138th OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP at Turnberry.

    Rule 0.2: PGA Tour - 91st PGA Championship

    Korea’s Yang Young-eun’s win at the 91st PGA CHAMPIONSHIP has once again underlined the growing strength of the game in Asia with the Asian Tour playing a big role in the development of the game in the continent.

    Rule 0.3: Record Score - 2009

    Chapchai Nirat's flawless final round of five-under 67 seemed modest by his own lofty standards that saw him twice card 10-under this week, but it was just enough to give him a bagful of records enroute to winning the $ 300,000 SAIL Open golf tournament at the Classic Golf Resort on Saturday. The 25-year-old Chapchai, won his third Asian Tour title with a total of 32-under 256, that sent the world media scurrying in search of the record books.

    Rule 0.4: 2009 - Asian Tour OOM Winner

    Thongchai Jaidee's (THA) wins at Enjoy Jakarta Indonesia Open in March and Ballantine's Championship in April with good performances in the other events saw him eventually sustain more than a $100,000 lead over his nearest rival at the end of the year 2009.

    Rule 0.5: Phil Mickelson - Wins during 2009

    Phil Mickelson had a good year in Golf as he clocked up wins at Northern Trust Open, World Golf Championships-CA Championship, The TOUR Championship and WGC-HSBC Champions.

    Rule 0.6: Tiger Woods - Last event won in 2009

    Tiger Woods' last tournament win in 2009 came at JBWere Masters in Melbourne, Australia during November 2009 where he scored 14-under-par.

    Rule 0.7: Spiderman

    Camilo Villegas of Colombia is known as Spiderman because of his signature pre-putting routine.

    Rule 0.8: Ben Crenshaw - Head injury

    Ben Crenshaw threw the putter into the air and it came down and hit him in the head.

    Rule 0.9: Golf Ball Colour - Antartica

    Orange-coloured golf balls are used on the golf course in Antartica.

    Rule 0.10: US Golf - governing body

    USGA is the governing body for United States of America.

    Rule 0.11: Most Golf courses - American State

    There are over 1200 golf courses in Florida, the sunshine state. The state with the second most golf courses is California

    Rule 0.12: Golf Ban in Scotland

    In Scotland, Golf was prohibited in 1457.

    To ensure that the people of Scotland were not wasting time golf was banned. They were supposed to be preparing against a British invasion threat.In 1502 the ban was lifted.

    Rule 0.13: Ball in Tree - Nick Faldo

    There are three options for continuing play when your ball gets stuck in a tree: play the ball as it lies; declare the ball unplayable; or take a lost ball.

    Play It as It Lies
    What this means, of course, is that you're willing to climb up into the tree and take a swing at the ball. And if you did, you wouldn't be the first. Nick Faldo famously played a ball from a tree once.

    But the odds of coming up with a decent shot in such a scenario are mighty slim. The odds of further messing up the hole are much greater. So this option is best left to golfers who are even crazier than you.

    Unplayable
    You can declare the ball unplayable under Rule 28, take a one-stroke penalty and, most likely, drop within two club-lengths of the ball (there are other options for continuing under the unplayable rule, but this is the most likely to be used in this scenario). The spot from which you measure the two club-lengths is that spot on the ground directly under where the ball rests in the tree.

    But in order to use the unplayable option, you must be able to identify your ball. You can't just assume that it's up there somewhere, and you can't just assume that a ball you see in the tree is yours. You must positively identify it as yours.

    That might mean trying to shake it loose from the tree, or climbing the tree simply to retrieve the ball for ID purposes. Before you do either, make sure you've announced your intention to treat the ball as unplayable. If you dislodge the ball without having made your intentions clear (to continue under the unplayable rule), you'll incur a penalty stroke under Rule 18-2a (Ball at Rest Moved) and will be required to put the ball back in the tree! (Failure to replace a ball such moved would result in an additional 1-stroke penalty.) However, if you proceed directly under one of the options of rule 28, you need not replace the ball (see decision 20-3a/3).

    So make sure you identify your ball before continuing under the unplayable option, and make sure you declare your intentions before retrieving or dislodging the ball from the tree.

    Lost Ball
    Of course, you may not be able to find a ball that has lodged in a tree, even if you know it's there. The only option then is to accept the penalty for a lost ball and proceed under Rule 27 (Ball Lost or Out of Bounds). The lost ball penalty is stroke-and-distance; that means assessing a one-stroke penalty and returning to the spot of the previous stroke, where you must replay the shot.

    Even if you see a ball up in the tree, you'll have to take a lost ball penalty unless you can positively identify it as yours.

    Rule 0.14: Putting with Wrong End of Putter

    The player incurs a penalty of loss of hole in match play or two strokes in stroke play for a breach of Rule 14-1, which requires that the ball be struck at with the head of the club. In stroke play, the stroke with the wrong end of the putter counts, and, since the ball was holed, the player had completed play of the hole.

    Rule 0.15: Golf Ball Maximum Weight

    The actual weight of a golf ball cannot be more than 1.62 ounces.

    Rule 0.16: Golf Ball Maximum Diameter

    The diameter of a golf ball cannot exceed 1.68 inches.

    Rule 0.17: Definition of Casual Water

    "Casual water" is any temporary accumulation of water on the course that is not in a water hazard and is visible before or after the player takes his stance. Snow and natural ice, other than frost, are either casual water or loose impediments, at the option of the player. Manufactured ice is an obstruction. Dew and frost are not casual water.
    A ball is in casual water when it lies in or any part of it touches the casual water.

    Rule 0.18: Definition of Stroke

    A "stroke" is the forward movement of the club made with the intention of striking at and moving the ball, but if a player checks his downswing voluntarily before the clubhead reaches the ball he has not made a stroke.

    Rule 0.19: Definition of Equipment

    “Equipment” is anything used, worn or carried by the player or anything carried for the player by his partner or either of their caddies, except any ball he has played at the hole being played and any small object, such as a coin or a tee, when used to mark the position of a ball or the extent of an area in which a ball is to be dropped. Equipment includes a golf cart, whether or not motorised.
     
    Note 1: A ball played at the hole being played is equipment when it has been lifted and not put back into play. 

    Note 2: When a golf cart is shared by two or more players, the cart and everything in it are deemed to be the equipment of one of the players sharing the cart.
    If the cart is being moved by one of the players (or the partner of one of the players) sharing it, the cart and everything in it are deemed to be that player’s equipment. Otherwise, the cart and everything in it are deemed to be the equipment of the player sharing the cart whose ball (or whose partner’s ball) is involved.

    Rule 0.20: Nearest Point of Relief

    Nearest point of relief is not mentioned in the Unplayable Ball Rule, Rule 28.

    Rule 0.21: Ground Under Repair

    “Ground under repair” is any part of the course so marked by order of the Committee or so declared by its authorised representative. All ground and any grass, bush, tree or other growing thing within the ground under repair are part of the ground under repair. Ground under repair includes material piled for removal and a hole made by a greenkeeper, even if not so marked. Grass cuttings and other material left on the course that have been abandoned and are not intended to be removed are not ground under repair unless so marked.

    When the margin of ground under repair is defined by stakes, the stakes are inside the ground under repair, and the margin of the ground under repair is defined by the nearest outside points of the stakes at ground level. When both stakes and lines are used to indicate ground under repair, the stakes identify the ground under repair and the lines define the margin of the ground under repair. When the margin of ground under repair is defined by a line on the ground, the line itself is in the ground under repair. The margin of ground under repair extends vertically downwards but not upwards.

    A ball is in ground under repair when it lies in or any part of it touches the ground under repair. Stakes used to define the margin of or identify ground under repair are obstructions.

    Note: The Committee may make a Local Rule prohibiting play from ground under repair or an environmentally-sensitive area defined as ground under repair.

    Rule 0.22: Trivia

    Part of general golf trivia

Hours
Minute
Second
Rolex
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