Ground Under Repair – Rule 25

Down the left side of the fairway on the fifth hole of our course, a large areas is marked as ground under repair. Due to storms late last year and the lack of time to clean up the mess, our managing committee has declared this area as Ground Under Repair. It is a well know local rule and the area is marked by a white line.

rules_official_new_webRecently, I was playing a round of golf with my usual friends and one of us hit their ball into this area. We searched and searched, but we did not find the ball. As the default rule guy, they asked me for a ruling. I stated that since we did not find the ball, it had to be declared lost, and he had to go back to the tee to rehit.

Well, I started thinking and after a bit of research, I found out that I was wrong.

According for Rule 25-1c, my friend was able to take a free drop, without penalty. Here is how the rule reads:

Ball in Abnormal Ground Condition Not Found
It is a question of fact whether a ball that has not been found after having
been struck toward an abnormal ground condition is in such a condition. In
order to apply this Rule, it must be known or virtually certain that the ball
is in the abnormal ground condition. In the absence of such knowledge or
certainty, the player must proceed under Rule 27-1.

If it is known or virtually certain that a ball that has not been found is in an
abnormal ground condition, the player may take relief under this Rule. If he
elects to do so, the spot where the ball last crossed the outermost limits of
the abnormal ground condition must be determined and, for the purpose of
applying this Rule, the ball is deemed to lie at this spot and the player must
proceed as follows:

(i)Β  Through the Green: If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the
abnormal ground condition at a spot through the green, the player may
substitute another ball, without penalty, and take relief as prescribed in
Rule 25-1b(i).

(ii)Β  In a Bunker: If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the abnormal
ground condition at a spot in a bunker, the player may substitute another
ball, without penalty, and take relief as prescribed in Rule 25-1b(ii).
(iii) In a Water Hazard (including a Lateral Water Hazard): If the ball last
crossed the outermost limits of the abnormal ground condition at a spot
in a water hazard, the player is not entitled to relief without penalty. The
player must proceed under Rule 26-1.

(iv)Β  On the Putting Green: If the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the
abnormal ground condition at a spot on the putting green, the player may
substitute another ball, without penalty, and take relief as prescribed in
Rule 25-1b(iii)

Basically, not remembering and my playing partner not knowing the rules cost him 2 stokes. I will rectify this error this morning as we play our weekly round. With an important tournament approaching, I will have to reread the rules and make sure I am aware of all their nuances.

Rules are important in golf. They even the playing field, only if players actually know them. Have you read the rule so of golf lately? If so, how long ago?

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!

4 thoughts on “Ground Under Repair – Rule 25

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