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8I
Defining When and Where Players May Practise
8I
Defining When and Where Players May Practise
I-1

Practising Before Rounds

Purpose. Rule 5.2 covers practising on the course before or between rounds during a competition:
  • Match Play (Rule 5.2a). Players in a match may practise on the course before or between rounds, as they usually will have an equal chance to do so because they play at the same time.
  • Stroke Play (Rule 5.2b). Players must not practise on the course before a round on the day of a competition, as they may not have an equal chance to do so because they usually play in different groups at different times. But they are allowed to practise on a day of the competition after their competition play for the day is complete.
There are many different considerations about whether to allow practice on the course, such as fairness to the players, possible interference with set-up of the course and maintenance activities, the amount of time before or between rounds, or when players are encouraged to play on the course outside the competition. For these or other reasons, a Committee can choose to adopt a Local Rule that modifies these default provisions by either allowing or prohibiting such practice entirely or by limiting when, where or how such practice may take place. Model Local Rule I-1.1 "Rule 5.2a is modified in this way: A player must not practise on the competition course before or between rounds. [Or, if players are allowed to practise in limited ways: Describe those limits and when, where and how a player may practise on the course.] Penalty for Breach of this Local Rule: Penalty for first breach: General Penalty (applied to the player's first hole). Penalty for second breach: Disqualification." Model Local Rule I-1.2 "Rule 5.2b is modified in this way: A player may practise on the competition course before or between rounds. [Or, if players are allowed to practise in limited ways: Describe those limits and when, where and how a player may practise on the course.] [Or, if players are prohibited from practising on the course both before and between rounds: "A player must not practise on the competition course before or between rounds."]
I-2

Prohibiting Practising on or Near Previous Putting Green

Purpose. Rule 5.5b allows a player, between the play of two holes, to practise putting or chipping on or near the putting green of the hole just completed. But if this may affect pace of play or for other reasons, the Committee can choose to prohibit such practice. Model Local Rule I-2 Rule 5.5b is modified in this way: Between the play of two holes, a player must not:
  • Make any practice stroke on or near the putting green of the hole just completed, or
  • Test the surface of that putting green by rubbing the putting green or rolling a ball.
Penalty for Breach of Local Rule: General Penalty.
EXPLORER PLUS
Section1The Role of the Committee
The Rules of Golf define the Committee as the person or group in charge of a competition or the course. The Committee is essential to the proper playing of the game. Committees have the responsibility of running the course on a day-to-day basis or for a specific competition and they should always act in ways that support the Rules of Golf. This part of the Official Guide to the Rules of Golf provides guidance to Committees in fulfilling this role. While many of the duties of a Committee are specific to running organized competitions, an important part of the Committee's duties relates to its responsibility for the course during general or every day play.
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