Sunday, January 30, 2011
False alarm on Lefty rules violation
When I saw Bones tend the flagstick for Phil's third shot at the San Diego Open my first thought was "He's not allowed to do that!". I distinctly recalled a recent magazine article that talked about the flag being tended and pulled for a shot from off the green, and the article was quite clear in its assertion that this was not allowed. So I looked up good ol' Rule 17 in the Rules of Gowf, dealing with "The Flagstick". Rule 17-1 deals with tending the flagstick. It states "Before making a stroke from anywhere on the course, the player may have the flagstick attended, removed or held up to indicate the position of the hole. If the flagstick is not attended, removed or held up before the player makes a stroke, it must not be attended, removed or held up during the stroke or while the player’s ball is in motion if doing so might influence the movement of the ball." So, Phil is in the right because clearly Bones was attending the flag prior to the shot. The article in question clearly deals with the situation where someone's hitting a shot that's not expected to go in, and someone runs up to jerk the flag out of the hole.