Monday, March 14, 2016

Ask Linda #1267-Ball behind green lands in water hazard in front

Hello Linda,
I was looking at your blogs and post and they are great. I have had my fellow high school coaches sign up for your emails and they have really helped our league get a better understanding of the rules. 

Quick question. Flagline: A player hits the ball over a yellow-staked water and over the green. His next shot he skulls one into the water, unplayable. Where would the player take the next drop?
Lou from Oak Hills, California

Dear Lou,

I’m always happy to learn that someone is making good use of my columns; thank you for sharing that with me.

The player in your question has two relief options under Rule 26, both of which will add one penalty stroke to his score:

(1) Play another ball from the spot where he hit the ball that went into the water. This is called “stroke and distance.” This means he would drop a ball on the spot past the green where he played the ball that went back over the green and into the hazard. Since it is known that the ball is in the water hazard, he would simply stay where he was, drop a ball, play the same shot again (well, let’s hope it’s not the exact same shot), and add a penalty stroke.

(2) Walk to the far side of the hazard (the tee side, not the green side), and drop a ball on the flagline, using as his reference the point where the ball last crossed the margin of the hazard. Assuming the ball flew straight into the hazard and did not at any point come out on the other side and roll back in, the flagline would start at the hole, pass through the point where the ball crossed the hazard margin, and extend behind the hazard. The player would drop his ball anywhere on this line, behind the hazard. His next shot would have to go over the hazard. Don’t forget to add the penalty stroke for taking relief from a water hazard.

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