Friday, February 12, 2016

Ask Linda #1254-Putt hits closest-to-pin marker

Linda, playing in a seniors competition on Monday there were nearest the pin prizes on all par 3's. On one hole, a player from the opposing team was on the green. There was a nearest the pin marker (a steel rod and card) near the pin but not on the line of the putt. He did not mark and move the nearest the pin marker. He putted, his ball was off line, and it hit the rod, which diverted it into the hole. My partner and the other pair felt it was a “rub of the green.” I stated that it must have breached a rule, but there being a group already waiting to play behind us there was not time to delve into the rule book. I have looked at the rules but am still not clear.
I would be please to receive your observations.
Lou from the UK

Dear Lou,

This was a rub of the green. The rod is an outside agency. There is no penalty when a ball accidentally strikes an outside agency [Definition of “Rub of the Green;” Rule 19-1].

While you can get away with using physical markers on the green to indicate closest to the pin in a casual competition among friends, it’s best to use a tape measure and writing pad that can be positioned off the green for a more serious event.

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