Monday, April 6, 2015

Ask Linda #1032a-Follow-up question to #1032

Hello Linda.
My first time writing and I read all your columns and love them.
On this ball-moving question [Ask Linda #1032] - if you're searching for your ball, are you not allowed to move it to identify it as your own? Could that be the situation in this case?
Lulu from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

Dear Lulu,

You are allowed to mark and lift a ball in order to identify it; you are not allowed to move your ball during search.

So… If you are searching for your ball and find a ball that you cannot identify without lifting, the proper procedure is to call over a fellow competitor to witness what you are doing, mark and lift the ball, replace it, and play it if it’s yours. You may not clean the ball more than necessary to identify it [Rule 12-2].

On the other hand, if you accidentally move a ball during search, and it turns out to be yours, you incur a one-stroke penalty for moving your ball in play [Rule 18-2a]. If another player moves your ball while helping you search, there is no penalty to that player and the ball must be replaced [Rules 18-3 and 18-4].

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