So Happy To­gether

Have a team match com­ing up? Know the rules that ap­ply

Golf Digest (South Africa) - - The Golf Life -

here’s a spe­cial feel­ing that comes from team­ing with a friend to win a match. But the rules that gov­ern team play can dif­fer from what you’re used to. Here are a few do’s and don’ts to keep in mind. – Sara Garmezy

Twatch the putt

▶You can’t stand on an ex­ten­sion of your part­ner’s line when he or she putts, but you may look at it dur­ing the stroke from the other side of the hole (rule 14-2b, def­i­ni­tion: line of putt).

switch it up

▶You and your part­ner can play in any or­der when it’s your side’s turn to play (rule 30-3b) . This is es­pe­cially handy on the putting green. For ex­am­ple, part­ners with sim­i­lar putts can de­cide who should go first to give your team the best chance at hol­ing one of the putts.

leave it there

In match play, if your part­ner’s ball on the green can as­sist your shot off the green, you don’t have to mark it un­less your op­po­nent asks you to (rule 22-1). If you hit it, re­place the ball, but your ball is played as it lies.

▶ wait for your part­ner

▶If your part­ner is late, start play­ing. You can be a one­man team un­til he or she ar­rives.This also ap­plies dur­ing the round if one of you has to sit out some holes (rule 30-3a, rule 31-2). The only stip­u­la­tion is that a part­ner can only join or re­join a match or round be­tween holes.

share too many clubs

▶It’s okay if you need to use your part­ner’s put­ter or any other club pro­vided the com­bined num­ber of clubs in both your bags is 14 or less (rule 4-4b). This rule ap­plies even if one of you dam­ages a club dur­ing nor­mal course of play, such as bending it while hit­ting a shot by a tree root.The dam­aged club can be re­placed, pro­vided you don’t un­duly de­lay the tour­na­ment.

as­sist in your part­ner’s shot

You can’t shield your part­ner from the el­e­ments (rain, wind, bright sun, etc.) dur­ing a stroke, nor can you of­fer phys­i­cal or di­rec­tional as­sis­tance. That means you can’t do things like help them main­tain their bal­ance while hit­ting an awk­ward shot, in­di­cate his or her line of play (rule 8-2a) or stand close to or on an ex­ten­sion of that line be­hind the ball dur­ing the stroke (rule 14-2).

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