Anchored Stroke

Frank Guastella PGA Rules Coach
For those using the anchored putting stroke, it is getting to the end of the line for you to use this type of stroke. As you may remember, when golf’s ruling bodies, the USGA and R&A, announced the ban on anchored putting in 2013, the date of January 1, 2016 was declared the implementation date for the change. For those golfers who have used sticking a club against your chest, mid section or any other body part you are on the clock to find an alternative. So after January 1, 2016 if you continue to anchor you will incur a two shot penalty in stroke play or loss of hole in match play.

The USGA and R&A felt that anchoring ran counter to the spirit of what a stroke consists of, which is the club swinging freely. There was the perception that anchoring gave golfers an unfair advantage. If you want to use a long or belly putter you still can. If you are going to use a belly putter the shaft the shaft has to be held so the club swings freely. Resting the but tend of the club against your stomach is an anchor point, which is against the rules. Using the long putter is permissible, just remember that the shaft contacts on the hands and lower part of the arm. USGA Executive Director, Mike Davis said in 2013: “We’re not trying to take away your long putter. All you need to do is hold the club away from your body, where you control the whole club with your hands.”

Frank Guastella, PGA Rules Official Michigan Section PGA
Staff Writer, Mike Fay Golf
If you have a question for Frank here’s where you can contact him.
Email:  fguastella@franklin-golf.net
To “follow” Frank on Twitter click here
To “like” Frank on Facebook click here

Refusal To Look For Original Ball

Frank Guastella PGA Rules Coach

While working a stroke play tournament this summer I was called over by a  player to make a ruling.  At a par – 4 hole, Player A hit his second shot into a dense thicket behind the green.  Since the ball may be lost, Player A announced that he was going to hit a provisional ball.  The provisional ball came to rest near the hole.  One of his fellow competitiors went forward to search for Player A’s original ball.  Player A decided that he was not going forth to search for his original ball and approched his provisional ball.

As he is nearing his provisional ball, his fellow competitor tells him he believes that he has found his original ball and that he needed to come over and identify the ball as his original ball. Player A refused and said he was going to play his provisional ball.

The fellow competitor spotted me and called me over.  He explained what had happened.  I went over to Player A and explained to him that one of his fellow competitors may have found the original ball and that he needed to identify the ball.  The player steadfastly refused to do so saying ” I have no intention of searching for or identifying such a lousy shot” and that he was going to play his provisional ball.

I then explained to Player A that under Rule 27 Ball Lost or Out of Bounds: Provisional Ball, that he must inspect the ball that had been found and, if it was his original ball, he must continue play with it or proceed under Rule 28 Ball Unplayable.  I also explained that if he refused to comply with my ruling I would be justified in imposing a penalty of disqualification for his refusal to comply with a Rule.

Needless to say, he did not want to be disqualified and so he identified the ball as his and proceeded under Rule 28 Ball Unplayable.

If you have any questions, comments or you seek information on any of the Rules of Golf please contact me at Mike Fay Golf.

Frank Guastella, PGA Rules Official Michigan Section PGA

Staff Writer, Mike Fay Golf
If you have a question for Frank here’s where you can contact him.
Email:  fguastella@franklin-golf.net
To “follow” Frank on Twitter click here
To “like” Frank on Facebook click here

 

Club Replacement & Normal Course Of Play

Frank Guastella PGA Rules Coach

Club Replacement and Normal Course of PlayRory Throwing Club

During the second round of play of the 2015 WGC – Cadillac Championship a frustrated Rory McIlroy hurled a golf club into the water in anger, playing the remainder of the round without his three iron.  According to the Rules of Golf, a club can be replaced if it is damaged in the “normal course of play”.

The term “normal course of play” is intended to cover all reasonable acts but specifically excludes cases of abuse.  In addition to making a stroke, practice swing or practice stroke, examples of acts that are in the “normal course of play” include the following:

*removing or replacing a club in the bag;
*using a club to search for or retrieve a ball (except by throwing the club);

*leaning on a club while waiting to play, teeing a ball or removing a ball from the hole: or

*accidentally dropping a club.

Examples of acts that are not in the “normal course of play” include the following:

*throwing a club whether in anger, in retrieving a ball, or otherwise;

*”slamming” a club into a bag; or

*intentionally striking something (e.g. the ground or a tree) with the club other than during a stroke, practice swing or practice stroke.

On a personal note, I felt Rory’s club tossing showed a lack of professionalism and a lack of respect to the game.  I can understand his frustration with hitting a bad shot, but I do not condone his ultimate reaction.  You are the Number One player in the world, act like it.

If you have a question on the Rules of Golf please submit it to @new.mikefaygolf.  Here’s hoping your re Playing By The Rules.

Frank Guastella, PGA Rules Official Michigan Section PGA
Staff Writer, Mike Fay Golf
If you have a question for Frank here’s where you can contact him.
Email:  fguastella@franklin-golf.net
To “follow” Frank on Twitter click here
To “like” Frank on Facebook click here

Photo:  USA Today

How To Take Relief From Immovable Obstructions

Frank Guastella PGA Rules Coach

How To Take Relief From Immovable Obstructions

In the Rules of Golf an obstruction is a movable obstruction if it can be moved without unreasonable effort, without unduly delaying play and without causing damage.  Otherwise it is an immovable obstruction and the player may seek relief when his ball lies in or on the obstruction, or when the obstruction interferes with the player’s stance or the area of his intended swing.  The player must find the “Nearest Point of Relief” and proceed from that point.

The Note to the Definition of “Nearest Point of Relief” provides that the player should determine this point by using “the club with which he would have made his next stroke if the condition were not there to simulate the address position, direction of play and swing for such stroke.”  This does not mean that the player may use any club, address position, direction of play or swing in determining the nearest point of relief.

In determining the nearest point of relief accurately it is recommended that the player use the club, address position, direction of play and swing (right or left – handed) that he would have used had the obstruction or condition not have been there.  For example, the player has interference from an immovable obstruction and, were it not for the obstruction, he would have used a right – handed stroke with a 7 iron to play the ball from its original position towards the green.  To determine the nearest point of relief accurately, he should use a right – handed stroke with a 7 iron and the direction of play should be towards the the green.

If you have any questions regarding the Rules of Golf please submit them to @new.mikefaygolf and we will get them answered for you.  Here is hoping that you are “Playing By The Rules.”

Frank Guastella, PGA Rules Official Michigan Section PGA
Staff Writer, Mike Fay Golf
If you have a question for Frank here’s where you can contact him.
Email:  fguastella@franklin-golf.net
To “follow” Frank on Twitter click here
To “like” Frank on Facebook click here

The Use Of The Provisional Ball Rule

 

Frank-Guastella-Playing-By-The-Rules-Banner-with-Website-Background_edited-1

The Use Of A Provisional Ball

This is the next in the Playing By The Rules Video Series.  Mike and Frank discuss the proper way of using a provisional ball.   We discuss what the rule states and how to go about it properly, because it matters to your score!

Announcing your intentions to hit a provisional ball is so important because if you don’t that next ball you do hit becomes the ball in play.  This leaves you no chance to find the original ball.
If you have questions on the Rules of Golf or comments on this video please leave them below.  As always, here is hope that you are Playing By The Rules!
Frank Guastella, PGA Rules Official Michigan Section PGA
Staff Writer, Mike Fay Golf
If you have a question for Frank here’s where you can contact him.
Email:  fguastella@franklin-golf.net
To “follow” Frank on Twitter click here
To “like” Frank on Facebook click here

Pin It on Pinterest