QUESTION: Nancy and Andy are playing in a tournament. On the 9th hole, Nancy goes to her ball after her tee shot. She finds her ball in the fairway with a piece of mud adhering to the ball. She lifts the ball to ensure it is her ball but knows she is not allowed to clean it. She then replaces the ball so that the mud does not interfere between the clubface and the ball. Andy says she must replace the ball as she originally found it. Is Andy correct?
ANSWER: Nancy is allowed to replace the ball in the direction she wishes as long as the ball is replaced on the spot it was lifted from. She is not allowed to rotate the ball in such a way that the mud would act as a tee. Andy is incorrect. See USGA Decisions on the Rules of Golf, 2014-2015, 21/5.
Golf clinics continue on Saturday mornings, 10:30-12. Private lessons can also be arranged by calling GMNGC (422-GOLF). Remember, the swing’s the thing and continuous improvement is what it’s all about.
Alan Jeffery is a golf professional at GMNGC.