Monday, December 28, 2015

Ask Linda #1221-Immovable obstruction outside bunker

Dear Linda, 
At our club we have rake holders outside the bunker that are basically immovable obstructions. If you're in the bunker do you get relief from your backswing from this immovable obstruction?
Lou from Bahrain

Dear Lou,

A player is entitled to relief from an immovable obstruction that interferes with his stance or the area of his intended swing anywhere on the golf course except when the ball is in a water hazard or a lateral water hazard [Rule 24-2].

If the ball is in a bunker, and the immovable rake holder interferes with the player’s backswing, the player has two choices [Rule 24-2b (ii)]:

1. Drop the ball in the bunker within one club-length of the nearest point of relief, no closer to the hole. This is a free drop.
2. Drop the ball behind the bunker on an extension of the imaginary line that begins at the hole and intersects the point where his ball lies in the bunker (what I like to call the “line of sight” to the hole). There is no limit to how far behind the bunker the ball may be dropped, but there is a one-stroke penalty for taking the ball out of the bunker.

If the ball lies in a water hazard, and the player is unable to hit the ball due to interference from an immovable obstruction, he must choose one of the one-stroke-penalty-relief options in Rule 26-1.

Copyright © 2015 Linda Miller. All rights reserved.