Correction to Decision 13-4/38


January 18, 2008

With the change in Exception 2 to Rule 13-4, the final paragraph of Decision 13-4/38 should have been amended to read as follows:

If, however, the player failed to extricate his ball from the first bunker with his first stroke and had smoothed his footprints while his ball still lay in that bunker, he would have incurred a penalty if his smoothing had breached Rule 13-2 with respect to his next stroke.

The R&A and USGA have agreed that the above interpretation will apply until the Decision is revised for the 2010 Decisions book.

The corrected Decision appears as below in the USGA online Rules of Golf Application.

13-4/38 Sand Smoothed After Ball Played Out of Bunker; Ball Later Returns to Smoothed Area
Q. After playing his ball out of a greenside bunker, the player smoothes his footprints. He then discovers that his ball is in another bunker on the other side of the green. He plays out of the second bunker and the ball comes to rest in the smoothed area of the first bunker. What is the ruling?
A. No penalty was incurred. The player did not smooth his footprints in the first bunker while his ball still lay in that bunker - see Exception 2 to Rule 13-4.

If, however, the player failed to extricate his ball from the first bunker with his first stroke and had smoothed his footprints while his ball still lay in that bunker, he would have incurred a penalty if his smoothing had breached Rule 13-2 with respect to his next stroke.

Incorrect second paragraph of the answer as published in the 2008-2009 'Decisions on The Rules of Golf':

If, however, the player had failed to extricate his ball from the first bunker with his first stroke and had smoothed his footprints while his ball still lay in that bunker, he would have incurred a penalty if, as a result of a subsequent stroke in the bunker, his ball had rolled back into the smoothed area.

 
   
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