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Possible double hit from sand

 
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JDerion
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Possible double hit from sand
« on: July 06, 2008, 09:17:56 PM »

I'm in a greenside bunker and I have an extreme shortside shot so I need to get it up and down in a hurry. On this kind of shot I'm hitting a good three to four inches behind the ball, and I'm taking a bunch of sand. I basically want the ball to flop out and trickle on; we're talking 4 or 5 feet of carry, total.  Anyway, I hit that shot today and on my follow through I feel like I probably hit the ball with my club. I guess it could have been a rock, but it felt like it was the ball.

Rule 14-4 states that if a player’s club strikes the ball more than once in the course of a stroke, the player must count the stroke and add a penalty stroke, making two strokes in all. I get that, but in reality I don't think I struck the ball with my club more than once. Technically, I doubt the ball ever touched the actual club during the initial shot; the ball was moved by the sand which was hit by my club. IF that is the case (and no, I can't be 100% sure), then I would have only struck the ball once with the club (assuming I did, in fact, hit the ball on the follow through).

This happened in a match today, and I called the double hit on myself but as I think about it I am wondering if it is possible that I didn't hit it twice (not that I would argue this point in a match. I can't prove that the ball didn't touch my club on the initial swing, but I "know" it didn't).

Is any stroke which causes the ball to move considered to be a strike of the ball?
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Uisce Beatha
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2008, 04:56:50 AM »

JD, a stroke doesn't even have to make the ball move.

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A "stroke" is the forward movement of the club made with the intention of striking at and moving the ball...

For example, a whiff is a stroke if your intent is to strike the ball.  In your scenario it doesn't matter if the club made contact with the ball on the initial movement.  All that matters is that you wanted to play the ball.
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Clive
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2008, 05:24:22 AM »

14-4/3 Player Hits Behind Ball and Then Strikes Moving Ball
Q. In playing a chip shot, a player’s club strikes the ground several inches behind the ball and does not come into contact with the ball. However, the ground is struck with enough force to cause the ball to move. The player’s club continues and strikes the ball while it is moving. What is the ruling?

A. The player must count his stroke and add a penalty stroke under Rule 14-4.  Even though the club itself did not initially strike the ball, the ball was put into motion due to the stroke; therefore, Rule 14-4 applies. (New)
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JDerion
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2008, 06:35:00 AM »

JD, a stroke doesn't even have to make the ball move.

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A "stroke" is the forward movement of the club made with the intention of striking at and moving the ball...

For example, a whiff is a stroke if your intent is to strike the ball.  In your scenario it doesn't matter if the club made contact with the ball on the initial movement.  All that matters is that you wanted to play the ball.

I understand the definition of a stroke, but 14-4 made no mention of a stroke. It specifically mentions a players club striking the ball more than once. If you watch the super slo-mo shots of bunker shots on television you'll see that the ball never touches the club on bunker shots, and shouldn't unless you're planning on skulling one over the green. It doesn't matter though, as that little 14-4/3 thingy clears up the question with the answer I expected. Thanks Clive.

Further, I guess it doesn't matter anyway because even if 14-4/3 didn't exist it could be a penalty under 19-2 for deflecting a ball in motion with equipment, correct?

A follow-up for you guys since I'm too lazy to look it up and because I know you two love to talk golf rules and this forum doesn't get much action:

I do not know that I hit the ball on my follow through. I know that I felt something hit the club on the follow through and it felt too muted to be a rock, but it could have been some other type of debris, or even a clump of wet sand or a very fast sparrow that just happened to be flying by at fast but sub-sonic speed. I did not hear any contact and the ball did not change direction in a visible way. No one else in the group noticed anything. However, I know I did feel something, and my hunch is that I felt the club making contact with the ball. Given the nature of the shot I was hitting and the other information I mentioned, in my opinion it is more likely than not that the club made contact with the ball.

Is this one of those rules that really comes down to the honesty of the player? I don't want to take penalties for things that I think might have happened unless I have to.

What standard of evidence is required for this kind of thing?
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Clive
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2008, 08:01:02 AM »

At least as to striking the ball (14-1) and disqualifications for playing when play has been suspended, situations are to be resolved against the player.  Probably others as well, but I need to leave some for Uisce to find.

Personally, I'd say if you feel something contact the clubhead and you're not sure if it was the ball or not, you should call yourself for a double-hit.  If you were playing your ball off gravel, it'd be different ... but there's little in proper sand that would feel much like contact with a golf ball save for your golf ball.
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stroh
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2008, 08:18:34 AM »

What would Rannulph Junuh do?
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JDerion
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2008, 08:34:39 AM »

there's little in proper sand that would feel much like contact with a golf ball save for your golf ball.
I agree with that. I think what threw me in this case was that I think the club barely hit the ball, hence the less than convincing feedback, lack of sound, and lack of perceptible change in direction of the ball. I've double hit before, and you know when you did it. This time was a little different and I was left to conclude that it must have been the ball because, even though it didn't feel like the ball, I can't think of what else it could be.
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Aske
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #7 on: July 07, 2008, 01:30:27 PM »

14-4/3 Player Hits Behind Ball and Then Strikes Moving Ball
Q. In playing a chip shot, a player’s club strikes the ground several inches behind the ball and does not come into contact with the ball. However, the ground is struck with enough force to cause the ball to move. The player’s club continues and strikes the ball while it is moving. What is the ruling?

A. The player must count his stroke and add a penalty stroke under Rule 14-4.  Even though the club itself did not initially strike the ball, the ball was put into motion due to the stroke; therefore, Rule 14-4 applies. (New)

this is really silly, obviously most fatted shots the ball will move at least some minor amount before being struck by the club. a lot of shots in deep rough people hitting the grass 1st the ball will move some before the club strikes it.   these situations are almost imperceptible, but should still count according to this rule. 
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Clive
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2008, 02:47:25 PM »

Aske, I don't get what's silly about it.  I think the decision arose to address specifically what happened to JDerion: the player's club didn't technically touch the ball, but certainly motivated it from its rest, and then a sure contact was made.  Every honorable player would deem that to be a double-hit, despite the hyper-technical argument that only one strike has occurred.

I think you're splitting hairs if you mean that the ball moves imperceptibly from the ground strike micro-seconds before being contacted by the ball.  Think of it as the "contact zone" and "afterward", because I'm sure that's how the USGA/R&A are approaching it.
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Uisce Beatha
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2008, 08:41:43 PM »

Sorry JD.  I know you know the definition of a stroke.   Anonymous

I was rushing out the door when I posted but my intent was to show that if missing the ball completely can constitute a stroke then it stands to reason a stroke which actually moves the ball would be considered as having struck the ball.  I figured there was a decision but the train doesn't wait for rules forum research.   Clive ftw  Wink

Long day and ripping into aske requires more time than I have available.  Tomorrow maybe.   Shocked
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spacey
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #10 on: July 07, 2008, 08:43:19 PM »

I say if it only takes two strokes to clear the bunker, you're in good shape. Jules might agree.
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Aske
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #11 on: July 07, 2008, 09:29:30 PM »

Sorry JD.  I know you know the definition of a stroke.   Anonymous

I was rushing out the door when I posted but my intent was to show that if missing the ball completely can constitute a stroke then it stands to reason a stroke which actually moves the ball would be considered as having struck the ball.  I figured there was a decision but the train doesn't wait for rules forum research.   Clive ftw  Wink

Long day and ripping into aske requires more time than I have available.  Tomorrow maybe.   Shocked

lol (and at clive)  you all should know by now i push the similar situation hypothetical to the limit. Devil  the point is, assuming the double hit, or whiff-and-hit  is UNintentional, how do you delineate which gets penalized and which doesnt?  certainly a player can call the penalty on himself as he sees fit in the spirit of the game. so say the player truly wants to be honest and just doesn't know whether his extra fatted shot moved the ball before he actually struck it... should he or shouldn't he? 
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Clive
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #12 on: July 08, 2008, 07:55:45 AM »

the point is, assuming the double hit, or whiff-and-hit  is UNintentional, how do you delineate which gets penalized and which doesnt?
I rule against the player if his handicap is lower than mine, if his HDTV is larger than mine, if his car is newer than mine, if he sports a King-Tut-wannabe beard-let, if he rants more than I, or if I'm just generally in a HTFU! mood.

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certainly a player can call the penalty on himself as he sees fit in the spirit of the game. so say the player truly wants to be honest and just doesn't know whether his extra fatted shot moved the ball before he actually struck it... should he or shouldn't he?
In my little world, he calls the penalty.  In golf, terms sometimes acquire special meaning; I believe "double hit" has one, as opposed to the one you or Sir Isaac might apply.

As well, the determination of a double-hit involves some bit of evidence that there was a second contact, else there's no point having the discussion.  If the player reasonably believes his club struck something when it shouldn't have, and the nature of the sensation he received leads him to believe it's possible that contact was with the ball, then the evidence supports the reasonable belief that a double-hit has occurred.  If the "second contact" occurs some 50 milliseconds after the initial contact, the player never will be able to discern it.  At that point, you and Newton are quibbling over trivialities, and de minimis non curat lex.
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Kobesobe
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Re: Possible double hit from sand
« Reply #13 on: July 10, 2008, 11:01:10 AM »

Sounds like you guys got this covered, but it reminded me of a time I did this in some nasty ruff. I was just trying to pop the ball out, which i did, but then I hit it again on the up swing lifting the ball almost straight up. My buddies still bring it up from time to time. It was pretty comical.
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