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Rule of the Week (June 17 – 23)

Written by Brian Lee
In our latest Rule of the Week we explain accidental ball movements and subsequent penalties.

Rule 18-2 – Practice Swing Accidentally Moves Ball in Play

QUESTION:
While making a practice swing, Brenda accidentally moved her ball in play with her club. What is the ruling?

ANSWER:
The answer depends on where the ball lies. If it is through the green, Brenda incurs a one stroke penalty, and must replace the ball to its original position. If she fails to replace the ball, she will incur a total penalty of loss of hole in match play or two strokes in stroke play. Please refer to the Penalty Statement under Rule 18.
Also see (Rule 18-2 and Decision 18-2/20)

By Local Rule à used in all Golf Canada/Golf SK Championships.

Accidental Movement of a Ball on a Putting Green – Rules 18-2, 18-3 and 20-1 are modified as follows:

  • When a player’s ball lies on the putting green, there is no penalty if the ball or ball-marker is accidentally moved by the player, his partner, his opponent, or any of their caddies or equipment.
  • The moved ball or ball-marker must be replaced as provided in Rules 18-2, 18-3 and 20-1.
  • This Local Rule applies only when the player’s ball or ball-marker lies on the putting green and any movement is accidental.

Note: If it is determined that a player’s ball on the putting green was moved as a result of wind, water or some other natural cause such as the effects of gravity, the ball must be played as it lies from its new location. A ball-marker moved in such circumstances is replaced.