Friday, December 10, 2010

Ask Linda #262-Ball hits teammate

Hi Linda,

I was playing in a two-person better ball match play interclub competition when unfortunately I hit into the group on the green in front of us. My ball landed, and grazed the bum of another player from our club. It deflected my ball 2 inches from the cup, and after I got to the green and apologized profusely, I tapped the ball in for an eagle. The ruling I was given was that I had hit my partner (because the lady I hit played for our club and it was a team competition) and I was assessed a two-stroke penalty. I parred the hole and our opponents bogeyed so we took the hole anyway. Just curious if that ruling was correct.


Dear Lulu,

The golfer playing with you in your better ball match was your partner. The player you hit may have been your teammate, but she was not your partner. As such, she was, by definition, an “outside agency.” When a player’s ball is accidentally deflected or stopped by an outside agency, it is what is known as a “rub of the green.” There is no penalty, and the ball is played as it lies [Rule 19-1]. You should not have been assessed a penalty. Fortunately, the misunderstanding did not affect the outcome of the hole.

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