Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Ask Linda #435-Island green drop

Hi Linda,
Can you please provide a ruling on a situation we had this Sunday in our golf society?

The temperature was below zero and the greens were frozen solid; we were playing an island hole as our nearest the pin hole.

It was about 110 yds and the green is completely surrounded by water except for a small walkway to gain access to the island.

If you imagine the green/lake as a clock face, at 9 o’ clock there is a drop zone on the edge of the lake.

One of our groups went into the water from the tee and then took their 3rd shots from the drop zone.

Another group landed on the green and then skidded through into the water.

They then proceeded to the green and then dropped their next balls on the island at the nearest point of relief that was not nearer the hole, which was at the back of the island. (They commented that if there had not been a point of relief on the island that was not nearer the hole they would have also gone to the drop zone).

Can you please tell me which group was correct? I am assuming it was the group who went to the drop zone, but can you confirm it for me please?

Many thanks,

Dear Lou,

You are correct. The group using the dropping zone proceeded correctly; the other group did not.

The Committee has the authority to establish a dropping zone for an island green [Decision 33-2a/10]. A player would then have the option to use the dropping zone, in addition to the relief options in Rule 26-1 for a ball in a water hazard.

Assuming the water to the rear of the green is marked as a lateral hazard, the players in the second group did have the option to drop within two club-lengths not nearer the hole. However, there is no option to drop at the nearest point of relief when taking relief from a water hazard. The place the players chose to drop was not within two club-lengths of where the ball crossed the margin of the hazard (judging from your diagram). Their only choices within the Rules were to use the dropping zone or return to the tee.

Copyright © 2012 Linda Miller. All rights reserved.