Monday, August 8, 2016

Ask Linda #1356-Players in match stop play in rain while others continue

Linda, I am confused about rule 6-8 regarding 4-ball match play. It says bad weather is not of itself a good reason for discontinuing play. The Exception says that players discontinuing match play by agreement are not subject to disqualification unless by doing so the competition is delayed.

I always thought that if play was suspended by the committee for a dangerous condition, the horn sounding or lightning in the area were the only reasons for stopping play.

Four of our members started their 4-ball competition on July 14th. It was a drizzling day and they played 5 holes in the competition. The rain got heavier and they all 4 of them decided to stop there and choose another day to resume the match starting at the 6th hole. They have until August 5th for the competition to be completed.

No horn had sounded, and others were out playing their matches. Were these players allowed to stop playing?

Thank you.
Lulu from Toronto, Ontario

Dear Lulu,


The Exception to Rule 6-8 for match play only that you cited allows players to discontinue their match without penalty and reschedule, provided they complete the match within the time frame established by the Committee (in this case August 5th).

The ruling is different in stroke play. Players competing in a stroke play tournament may not discontinue play unless the Committee has suspended play, there is danger from lightning, they are waiting for the Committee to decide a disputed point, or they have a good reason such as sudden illness [Rule 6-8a]. They may not decide to discontinue play because of bad weather.

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