Golf Brief Overview

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Golf is an exciting game and it definitely gives lot of relaxation to a person when it is played as a hobby. This game has gained a lot of popularity now compared to what it was a few years back – thanks to the media.

Like any other game, golf also has lot of rules to be followed in tournaments. By watching a tournament, one cannot understand the rules of the game. To a certain extent, even a nonprofessional can understand the rules of games like cricket, football etc. However, it is not easy in golf. Let us see some of the rules of the game.

Neither the player nor the caddie can influence the position or movement of the ball or the teeing ground. For any breach of rules pertaining to this, the player incurs a penalty. In match play for breach of rules, the penalty is loss of a hole as otherwise mentioned. If a competitor does not follow the rules and thereby affecting the rights of another player, will be disqualified. In stroke play, usually penalty for breach of rule is two strokes as other wise mentioned.

There are number of rules, which govern the players equipments like the clubs, balls etc. Golfer’s clubs as a whole should conform to the standards stipulated by the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St.Andrews. Various rules govern the shaft, the grip, the club head, the clubface etc. Alterations cannot be made to any of the above. No modifications can be made which will influence the movement of the ball. Any breach of this can lead to disqualification.

A player can carry fourteen clubs in a tournament. In case, he starts the game with less number of clubs, he can add to it during the course of the play until the total becomes fourteen. Two players cannot share clubs, unless they are partners in the game.

Golf ball should also conform to specifications with regard to the size, weight, spherical symmetry, initial velocity etc.. If the ball is cut or cracked, it is declared unfit to play. A player can change his ball if he feels it is not fit to play; he can do so after announcing his intention to change the ball giving valid reason for the change. Each player’s ball will bear an identification mark.

A person who records the scores of the competitors is a marker, appointed by the committee.

A player is entitled for only one caddie, and he is bound by the rules of the game. Any breach of rule by the caddie will result in the player-incurring penalty.

Any advice with regard to the nature of stroke or club to be used is not allowed from anybody else other than partners or caddie. Any consultation with regard to the hazards or position of hole or flagstick is not deemed as seeking advice. However, in a team game each team is permitted to appoint a captain or coach who can advice the players on the line of play. Any such appointment should be intimated to the committee before start of play.

After the initial stroke, the ball shall be played as it lies. Player cannot make any alterations either to the ball or to the playing area. In the course of the play if the player finds tree branches or any other immovable material obstructing his way, he cannot break the branches or move anything from his way.

There are rules governing every aspect of the game and any breach of the rules resulting in penalty either by way of losing holes or by way of adding strokes or being disqualified.

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