Thursday, May 26, 2016

Ask Linda #1312-Ball lost in rough

Dear Linda, 

Could you please give me a ruling on Abnormal Ground Conditions? After a lot of rain,
the front nine on our course was closed, so we played our club championship on the back nine twice. One of our ladies hit off the 10th tee into the long ruff. After searching for a while, her marker told her she could have a free drop because we were virtually certain that the ball went into the ruff. I was unsure of this rule but thought it would have been a lost ball, and she would have to go back to the tee. Can you please clear this up for me?
Lulu from Australia

Dear Lulu,

Abnormal Ground Conditions are casual water; ground under repair; and holes, casts, or runways made by burrowing animals, reptiles, or birds [Definition of “Abnormal Ground Conditions”].

Areas of rough on the golf course are not abnormal. They are commonly found on just about every golf course, and are cultivated intentionally. There is no free drop for a ball that is lost in the rough. This is a lost ball. The player must return to where she hit her previous shot to hit another ball and add a one-stroke penalty to her score [Rule 27-1c].

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