Did you know this CONTROVERSIAL rule on identifying your unmarked ball?

If you and your playing partner haven't marked your balls and you can't tell which is which, this can cause a big problem with the rules of golf.

Matt Chivers's picture
Fri, 18 Mar 2022
Did you know this CONTROVERSIAL rule identifying your unmarked ball?

We have seen many incidents and stories from our readers where they have been caught out by the rules of golf and it is always frustrating to see.

There are hundreds of sentences and paragraphs in the rules of golf which outline every little detail, but it is impossible to memorise every single one. 

We have seen a video posted by golfrules_questions which shows a very interesting and controversial incident that would need an accurate ruling.

The video shows two golf balls on the green. One is by the hole and one is in the hole. However, they are the same ball and neither of them has markings.

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You are probably thinking: what on earth happens now? Well, there is a very brutal end for whichever two golfers suffer from this rare but significant occurrence.

Both balls are deemed lost. Yes, you did read that correctly. Both players would need to return to the place of their previous shot under stroke and distance for a one-shot penalty. 

This lies under rule 18.2 of the R&A rules of golf website. This part of the rules refers to a ball being deemed as lost if it cannot be identified.

Also, if a player hits their first ball and their provisional ball in a similar spot and they can't distinguish them, then they should choose one and play that as the provisional ball.

This rule has certainly opened our eyes and we hope that it has also opened the eyes of many of our readers.



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