the rules of Golf
to go back and re-tee since Player B is permitted to recall
the stroke made from outside the teeing ground. What is
a.) Player A must go back and replay the hole.
b.) The hole stands as played, Player B’s claim is invalid.
c.) Player B loses the hole for giving wrong information.
By USGA Staff
1. In a four-ball match (side A-B vs. side C-D), Player A’s
score for the hole is four and Player B’s score is seven.
Player C’s score for the hole is six and Player D is putting
for a four (i.e. Player D is putting for a half). Just before
Player D putts, Player A tells Player D that his putt is going
to break to the left. Player D then makes his putt. What is
the result of the hole?
a.) Side A-B wins the hole.
b.) The hole is halved.
c.) Side C-D wins the hole.
2. In a four-ball match (side A-B vs. side C-D), the balls
of all four players lie on the putting green. A’s ball is the
farthest from the hole with B’s ball on the same line. Side
C-D concedes B’s next stroke, however, B putts anyway.
What is the ruling?
a.) Player B is disqualified from the hole.
b.) Player A is disqualified from the hole.
c.) Side A-B loses the hole.
3. In a four-ball match (side A-B vs. side C-D), the balls
of partners C and D lie near each other in the same bunker. Player C removes several leaves in the area, including
several leaves that were touching Player D’s ball. What is
a.) Side C-D loses the hole.
b.) Player C is disqualified for the hole, Player D incurs
no penalty provided he replaces the loose impedi-
ments next to his ball.
c.) Player D is disqualified for the hole, Player C incurs
4. In a single match without a referee, Player A and Player B are All Square through 17 holes. During play of the
18th hole, Player A plays a wrong ball. Both players agree
that A incurs a two-stroke penalty. Player A scores 6 on
the hole and Player B scores 7. The match is officially announced with Player A winning 1 up. The next day, Player
B realizes that the penalty for playing a wrong ball in match
play is loss of hole. Player B claims that A lost the 18th hole
and Player B wins the match. Is the claim valid?
a.) Yes, Player B wins the match.
b.) The answer depends on whether Player A knew that
the penalty for playing the wrong ball is loss of hole.
c.) No, the result of the match stands with Player A as
5. The 18th hole of a stroke play competition is a dogleg
right. Before playing from the teeing ground, Player A
adjusts the weights in his driver so he will be able to play
a better shot. His fellow-competitor informs him that this
may be a breach of the Rules. Player A asks for a ruling
from a referee. What is the proper ruling?
6. A player hits his first shot toward a water hazard and
there is knowledge or virtual certainty the ball is in the
hazard. He reaches the area where his ball is likely to be
and finds a ball in the hazard he thinks is his. He decides
to take relief from the hazard, proceeds under Rule 26-1b,
plays his next stroke onto the putting green and holes out
with his next stroke. When he retrieves his ball from the
hole, he realizes that the ball is not his original ball. What
is the ruling?
a.) There is no penalty and the player has proceeded
b.) The player incurs a total of three penalty strokes
(two for playing a wrong ball, one for the water
hazard) and must correct his mistake before playing
from the next teeing ground.
c.) The player incurs a total of three penalty strokes
(two for playing a wrong ball, one for the water
hazard), and since he has holed out, the hole is
7. A player hits his first shot toward a heavily wooded
area just in front of a lateral water hazard. When the player
arrives in the area, he assumes but is not sure his ball is in
the lateral water hazard, but proceeds under Rule 26-1c.
He plays the dropped ball onto the green. While walking
toward the green, he finds his original ball. He abandons
the dropped ball, continues play with his original ball and
holes out with three more strokes. How many penalty
strokes has the player incurred?
a.) 3 and the player must correct his mistake.
b.) 5 and the player has completed play of the hole.
c.) 5 and the player must correct his mistake.
8. In a single match, Player A plays from outside the teeing ground. His opponent, Player B, then plays from the
teeing ground. After both players reach the putting green,
Player B makes a claim about Player A playing from outside the teeing ground. Player B insists that Player A has
9. A player’s ball lies in the fairway on a calm, sunny
afternoon. The player grounds his club immediately behind
the ball and is getting ready to make a stroke. Almost immediately after the club is grounded, the ball rolls two
inches to the right. The player says he did not cause the
ball to move, but it is not known whether something else
caused the ball to move. What’s the ruling?
a.) The player incurs no penalty and plays the ball as it
b.) The player incurs no penalty and must replace the
c.) The player incurs a one stroke penalty and must
replace the ball.
10. On a par 3 hole, a player plays his first shot into a
greenside bunker. He plays his next shot over the green
and it comes to rest out of bounds. Before dropping, the
player smoothes footprints in the area where he just
played the ball in the bunker and makes a few practice
swings, touching the sand in the bunker each time. He
drops the ball in the smoothed area, and holes out with his
next stroke. What is the player’s score for the hole?
11. Player A and Player B are playing each other in a
match. On the 10th hole, Player B plays his third stroke
from the greenside bunker, which comes to rest two feet
from the hole, on the opposite side of the hole from Player
A’s next stroke. As Player B is raking the bunker, he tells
his opponent that he (B) wants to mark his ball. Player A
makes his next stroke before Player B has a chance to
mark his ball. Player B makes a claim. What is the ruling?
a.) Player A loses the hole.
b.) Player B may require Player A to replay his previous
c.) There is no penalty, since it is Player A’s turn to play.
12. In stroke play, a player’s tee shot is believed to be
under a pile of leaves in a bunker. He informs his fellow-competitor that he is going to search for the ball in the
leaves and uses one of his clubs to look through and move
these loose impediments. In the process, he touches the
sand in the bunker and moves his ball. He replaces the
ball as well as the loose impediments. How many penalty
strokes, if any, are incurred?