Thursday, January 12, 2017

Ask Linda #1458-Remove grass clippings from fringe

Hi Linda.
Can you clear this one up for me please? Playing in a pairs competition my partner’s ball was off the green on the apron. He wanted to putt the ball but there was cut grass between his ball and the green on the line of his putt. He wanted to brush aside the grass as we thought it was classed as a loose impediment, but our opponents objected and he played the ball as it lay. Was this the right decision or could he have moved the said grass? 
Thanks very much. 
Lou from Wales, UK

Dear Lou,

Grass cuttings, being natural objects, are loose impediments [Definition of “Loose Impediments”]. They may be brushed aside. Keep in mind that you may not move grass cuttings if they adhere to the ball, or if the cuttings and the ball lie in the same hazard.

On the other hand, if there were sand or loose soil interfering with the player’s desire to putt from the fringe, he would not be permitted to brush them aside. Sand and loose soil are only defined as loose impediments on the putting green.

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