Monday, February 27, 2012
Ask Linda #420-Finding ball after dropping behind hazard
A player’s ball is struck towards a water hazard .
The player & fellow competitor believed his original ball had come to rest in a water hazard. .
He searched for about a minute but did not find his ball..
It is known or virtually certain that the player’s ball is in the water hazard.
He therefore dropped another ball behind the hazard under Rule 26-1b and played it.
As he was walking to the green, the fellow competitor tells him: “this is your ball.”
He found his original ball outside the hazard (not in hazard, in rough) within five minutes.
What is the ruling?
Since it was known or virtually certain that the player’s ball was in the water hazard, he must play the ball that he dropped behind the hazard. It makes no difference that the original ball was found within five minutes outside the hazard. Even if the player had simply dropped the ball under Rule 26-1b and his original was found before he hit the dropped ball, he would still be required to continue play with the dropped ball. In this situation, as soon as the substituted ball is dropped, it is in play [Decision 26-1/3.5].
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