Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Ask Linda #772-Ball “in” hazard later found outside hazard

Hi Linda,
Again, I need your help.
I was playing a par 4 and chunked my second shot. The fairway is elevated so it's a blind shot to the green. But I knew there is a creek crossing the fairway in front of the green.
Although I did not see my ball enter the hazard, the ball was not in sight and there is nowhere for it to hide. No long grass, no bushes, no trees.
I was virtually certain my ball was in the creek and so were my opponents.
I took a penalty, dropped behind the hazard and hit onto the green.
Two holes later, I was playing a fairway which runs near the hole where I lost my ball. Lo and behold, I spotted my ball, which included my distinctive marking.
I can only assume it hit one of the rocks in the hazard and flew sideways to the adjoining fairway.
Now what? Penalty? DQ?
Thanks again for all your help
Lou from Ontario

Dear Lou,

When it is virtually certain that a ball is in a water hazard, you are entitled to any of the relief options available in Rule 26-1 [Decision 26-1/3]. The fact that your original ball turned up later does not change this. There is no penalty, no disqualification, no nothing. Pick up your found ball and drop it in your bag.

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