Friday, February 28, 2014

Ask Linda #802-Practice putting and chipping

I am looking for some clarification on rule 7-2 which prohibits practice strokes during a round, yet DOES allow practice putting and chipping on or near the green of the last hole played or the teeing ground of the next hole to be played.

My question is whether or not there is any difference in this rule that allows practice putting/chipping in stroke play vs. match play. My understanding is that there is no difference, and practice putting/chipping is in fact allowed in both match play and stroke play. Is that correct?

I believe that there is a common misconception that practice putting/chipping is allowed in match play but not in stroke play because the PGA tour institutes a condition of competition that disallows it, but in the televised match play events, Ryder Cup/US Amateur/etc., the players DO often practice on the greens. Can you please confirm, and clarify rule 7-2 if there is anything I am not understanding properly?

Lou from Boston

Dear Lou,

I could not have explained Rule 7-2 better myself! The Rule applies to both match play and stroke play.

Note 2, at the end of the Rule, explains that a Committee may prohibit practice on or near the putting green of the hole last played as a condition of the competition. When you watch golf on TV, if you do not see players practicing their putts after they complete a hole it is because the Committee has prohibited such practice. In my experience, practice under Rule 7-2 is generally permitted in amateur tournaments.

Copyright © 2014 Linda Miller. All rights reserved.