Thursday, February 20, 2014

Ask Linda #799.5-Ball resting against rake

Linda, if a ball comes to rest against a rake placed outside the sand trap, and after moving the rake the ball rolls into the sand trap, where do you play the ball for the next shot and is there any penalty? Side note: The slope is so severe that the ball couldn't be placed in its original spot without rolling into the sand trap.

Dear Lou,

A rake is a movable obstruction. When a ball comes to rest leaning against a movable obstruction, the player may remove the obstruction. If the ball moves as a result of moving the obstruction, he must replace it [Rule 24-1a]. If the ball will not come to rest on the spot where it is placed, he must try again. If the ball will not come to rest on the spot after the second try to place it, the player must place the ball at the nearest spot that is no closer to the hole and not in a hazard [Rule 20-3d (i)].

The ball in your question was outside a hazard. What if it had been resting against a rake in a hazard? The ball would have to be placed in the hazard. If such a ball, when placed, rolled closer to the hole, and there were no spot in the bunker no closer to the hole where the ball could be placed, the player would have to place the ball outside the bunker, thereby incurring a one-stroke penalty. This is one of several good arguments for placing rakes outside the bunkers.

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