Monday, October 24, 2016

Ask Linda #1407-Player changes clubs before playoff

Hi Linda,
A player who had 14 clubs in her bag ties for the lead in STROKE play. Before the playoff, the player removes a 2-iron & replaces it with another wedge. What penalty, if any? I am unable to find if a playoff is regarded as a separate competition from the original holes played.
Lulu from Motueka, New Zealand

Dear Lulu,

The number of holes in a stipulated round is 18 (unless a smaller number is authorized by the Committee). The player who begins his round with 14 clubs is limited to those clubs during the stipulated round. A playoff begins after the stipulated round is completed. As such, the player may replace any number of clubs at the start of the playoff, keeping in mind that she is still limited to 14 [Decision 4-3/12].

Please read the Definition of "Stipulated Round" in the front of your rulebook. It tells you that a stipulated round is 18 holes. Then look at Rule 4-4a, which tells you that you are limited to a maximum of 14 clubs for a stipulated round. Based on two separate instructions, the authors of the rulebook expect a player to understand that once the stipulated round (18 holes) is over, she may select different clubs for the next round, whether it be a one-hole playoff, three holes, or another 18 holes. The rulebook does not spell everything out explicitly, which is why I have so many questions to answer!

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