STROKE PLAY – RULES/CONDITIONS OF COMPETITION
There has been an apparent increase in the number of players and teams who have been subject to disqualification from stroke play competitions in recent months but there are relatively few rules of golf which, when breached, result in disqualification.
Here are a few of the main ones to remind existing members and advise new members wishing to play in medal competitions, of how best to avoid an ‘easily avoidable’ disqualification penalty in the coming season.
A Strokeplay Competition is any competition in which a player(s) is required to complete a scorecard and return it to the Committee.
1. On any day of a Strokeplay Competition, a competitor must not practise on the competition course or test the surface of any putting green on the course. The penalty for a breach is - Disqualification (Rule 7-1b)
This means that the player cannot practise anywhere on the course other than in the designated practice areas. e.g it is a breach of the rules if the player plays a practice stroke from any point on the 18th hole to the putting/chipping green and it is breach if the player practices putting on the 18th green even when the practice putting green is out of commission.
2. In any round of a handicap Strokeplay Competition, the competitor(s) must ensure that the correct handicap is recorded on the score card. The penalty for a breach of this Rule is – Disqualification (Rule 6-2b)
NOTE:- Stablefords and Texas Scrambles are forms of Strokeplay competition
3. The player must start at the time established by the Committee. The penalty for a breach is – Disqualification (Rule 6-3a)
This means that the player must be on the first tee or waiting at the first tee to play a drive at or before his allotted tee off time.
NOTE:- A player who is half-way to the tee from the Starter’s Shop is not on the tee or waiting to play his drive – the penalty is, therefore, disqualification. Avoid the penalty and get to the first tee in plenty of time.
4. The player must sign their score card and also ensure that the marker has also signed the score card. The penalty for a breach is – Disqualification (Rule 6-6b).
Please double-check that there are 2 signatures on the card before returning it to the Committee. The card is considered ‘returned’ to the Committee when it is placed in the Competitions Box.
5. The card must be returned to the Committee as soon as possible. The penalty for a breach is – Disqualification - (Rule 6-6b)
1. Don’t practice on any part of the competition course on any day of a Strokeplay Competition
2. Ensure your handicap is recorded on the score card.
3. Be at the first tee in plenty of time.
4. Make sure that both you and your marker have signed your card.
5. Enter your score into the computer (If applicable) and place your card in the Competitions Box
These are some basic rules of competitive strokeplay golf. There are other breaches which are subject to a penalty of disqualification and there are others which are subject to a penalty of 1 stroke or 2 strokes - too many to either prioritise or summarise in this note. Printed on the back cover of every ‘Rules of Golf’ book however, are these words.
‘Play the ball as it lies, Play the course as you find it, And if you can’t do either, do what is fair , but to do what is fair, you need to know The Rules of Golf’
ALWAYS CARRY A COPY OF THE RULES IN YOUR GOLF BAG
GET YOUR FREE COPY FROM THE STARTER
REMEMBER: THE MOST IMPORTANT RULE IN GOLF IS RULE 6 -
The player is responsible for knowing the rules and conditions under which the competition is to be played.