Rule of the Month: From Start to Finish
By OGA Sr. Rules Officials: Pete Scholz and Terry McEvilly
Click Here for the Rule of the Month Archive
2019 Rules: The Teeing Area and Putting Green
Correctly starting the play of a hole from the teeing area and properly completing the hole on the putting green are so important that these two areas of the course have special Rules governing play. A breach of a Rule in these two areas could easily result in a player being disqualified. Test your knowledge of the new Rules pertaining to the teeing area and putting green with the following quiz.
Questions: True / False
- When starting the play of a hole, the entire ball must be within the teeing area.
- In stroke play, a player is disqualified if she makes a stroke in a round with a non-conforming tee.
- In 2019, a stroke that misses the ball within the teeing area doesn’t count in the player’s score.
- When a ball is in play after a stroke and remains in the teeing area, such as when the ball is missed or just knocked off the tee by the stroke, it may be played as it lies or re-teed anywhere within the teeing area without penalty.
- Dew may be removed from the teeing area and the putting green without penalty.
- In stroke play, if a player begins a hole by making a stroke from outside the teeing area, he or she gets a two-stroke penalty and must correct the mistake by playing a ball from within the teeing area.
- Only old hole plugs and damage caused by the impact of a golf ball may be repaired on the putting green.
- In stroke play, every player is required to hole out at every hole.
- There is a one-stroke penalty for accidentally causing your ball to move on the putting green and the ball must be replaced.
A ball that has been marked, lifted and replaced on the putting green must be played from its new location if subsequently moved by gravity or wind.
- False. Rule 6.2b(1). A ball is considered in the teeing area when any part of the ball touches or is above the teeing area, such as on a tee.
- False. Rule 6.2b(2). The first breach of this Rule results in a two-stroke penalty. However, if the player uses a non-conforming tee more than once, the player is disqualified.
- False. Rule 6.2b(5). When a stroke from the teeing area, or anywhere else, misses the ball, the player must count the stroke and the ball is in play.
- True. Rule 6.2b(6). New in 2019 is the introduction of this liberty when the ball lies within the teeing area. Since the ball must still be played from within the teeing area, there is no penalty for accidentally causing your ball to move or purposely causing it to move by repositioning it within the teeing area. All of the teeing area liberties and restrictions still apply since the ball is still in the teeing area.
- False. Rules 6.2b(3), 8.1a and 8.1b. The teeing area is the only place on the course where dew may be removed without penalty. If a player purposely removes dew on the putting green and the action improves the conditions affecting the stroke, the player receives the general penalty of two strokes in stroke play or loss of hole in match play.
- True. Rule 6.1b(2) The stroke from outside the teeing area and any other strokes made with that ball do not count in the player’s score. This error must be corrected by playing a ball from within the teeing area. The player will be playing his or her third stroke (two-stroke penalty and the next stroke from within the teeing area). Failure to correct this mistake before beginning another hole results in disqualification.
- False. Rule 13.1c(2). Beginning in 2019, the liberty to repair damage to the putting green has been greatly expanded. In addition to old hole plugs and ball marks, the player may now repair hoof prints, spike marks and other damage to return the surface to its original condition. Repair of the putting green is allowed even if the player’s ball lies elsewhere.
- True and False. Rule 3.3c. The answer is true in a general stroke play competition. In order for a competition to be played on a fair and equitable basis, every player is required to hole out on every hole. Failure to do so results in disqualification unless the mistake is corrected before beginning another hole. However, the answer is also false when playing forms of stroke play that don’t require a player to hole out. These include Stableford and Par/Bogey competitions and a new form of stroke play that will be introduced in 2019 called Maximum Score.
- False. Rule 13.1d(1). There is no penalty for accidentally causing a ball to move on the putting green, whether that ball is yours or another player’s. The ball must be replaced on the original spot or an estimated spot if the location is unknown.
- False. Rule 13.1d(2). This is a significant change in the Rules for 2019. Generally, when a ball is moved by natural forces, such as wind or gravity, the ball is played from its new location. However, when a ball on the putting green has been lifted and replaced, if it subsequently moves for any reason before the player makes the next stroke, it must be replaced on the original spot.