Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Ask Linda #995-Walk on another player’s line of putt

Hi Linda,
In our golf club players are notorious for walking or standing on your line in order to complete their putting. Many of them do not have the courtesy to ask permission to complete their play. They just go ahead as if this is a right.
What is the Ruling on this?
Thank you.
Lou from Barbados

Dear Lou,

Walking on another player’s line of putt is poor etiquette. There is no penalty. If the line of putt is damaged, the player is entitled to repair the damage. If the damage cannot be repaired, the player may request relief. Since a player is always entitled to the lie and line of putt he had when his ball came to rest, relief should be granted [Decision 16-1a/13].

If this is a common occurrence on your course, someone (the pro, perhaps) needs to take the initiative to explain to the members that walking on another player’s line of putt is to be avoided. Players should not complete their play of a hole if it would mean standing on another player’s line of putt.

As a player, you need to point out when a player is standing on your line (or is about to) and request that he move. If the player will need to stand on your line to complete the hole, tell him that he will have to mark his ball, and tell him why.

If there is a deliberate disregard of common golf courtesy, your only hope is to request disciplinary action from the Committee. But I believe that if you are persistent and polite with your requests, your fellow competitors will learn to stay off your line of putt. And once they realize it is improper, they will spread the news.

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