Friday, February 6, 2015

Ask Linda #993-Ball thought to be in GUR

Hi Linda,
Can you answer the following please:-

A ball thought to be in GUR, player dropped and completed hole, found his original ball on the next tee after hole was finished. The GUR was left of fairway and the general feeling was the ball was heading that way. The ball was finally found beyond the GUR behind a tree and out of sight until reaching the next tee.

What is the ruling?
Lou from Spain

Dear Lou,

There is a big difference between having a “general feeling” that a ball is lost in Ground Under Repair (GUR) and having knowledge or virtual certainty that a ball that cannot be found is lost in GUR. Your narrative does not seem to indicate knowledge or virtual certainty. Accordingly, when the player did not find his ball within five minutes it was lost [Definition of “Lost Ball”]. He was required to play another ball from the spot where he hit his previous shot, adding a one-stroke penalty to his score [Rule 27-1c].

When the player dropped another ball and played it, he played from the wrong place [Rule 20-7].
• In match play he loses the hole.
• In stroke play he incurs a two-stroke penalty. Since this player obviously gained a significant advantage (the spot where he dropped his ball was much closer to the hole than the spot where he hit his previous shot), he would have to complete the hole with a second ball played from the spot where he hit his original ball. If he does not do so before teeing off on the next hole, he will be disqualified for committing a serious breach.

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