Saturday, July 29, 2017
Rules Nugget: Where is the ball?
There is a surprisingly simple way to remember where a ball officially lies under the Rules of Golf. The ball lies on the smaller area that it touches. I will repeat this pearl of wisdom as I address the different areas of the golf course. I will also tell you that all of the information below appears in the front of your rulebook in Section II – Definitions. You should read and study the Definitions very carefully. A full understanding of the Definitions may well be the most important step you can take to understand the Rules of Golf.
A ball is in a bunker when it lies in or any part of it touches the bunker. (Bunkers are smaller than the area that surrounds them.)
A ball is in casual water when it lies in or any part of it touches the casual water. (Casual water is smaller than the surrounding area.)
Ground Under Repair
A ball is in ground under repair (GUR) when it lies in or any part of it touches the GUR. Anything growing in GUR is part of the GUR. (GUR is smaller than the surrounding area.)
Out of Bounds
A ball is out of bounds when all of it lies out of bounds. If any part of the ball touches or overhangs the course, it is not out of bounds. (The golf course is smaller than the land that surrounds it.)
A ball is on the putting green when any part of it touches the putting green. (The putting green is a small part of the hole.)
A ball is in a water hazard when it lies in or any part of it touches the water hazard. This includes touching a line defining the margin of the hazard, which the Definition will tell you is part of the hazard. (A water hazard is generally smaller than the golf course, unless your course abuts an exceedingly large body of water, such as an ocean.)
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