No.87 Relief from Lateral Water Hazard
A ball played from the teeing
ground last crosses the margin of a lateral water hazard,
defined by red lines, at point X.
If the player chooses not to play their ball from inside the
hazard what are the other four relief options they have, under
penalty of one stroke?
If the water hazard had been designated with yellow stakes
and/or lines, which of the options in Question 1 would not be
If the player finds their ball inside the margin of a hazard and
they choose not to play it, may they drop a different ball under
penalty of one stroke, or must they play their original ball?
Apart from playing their ball as it lies in the lateral water
hazard, Rule 26-1 offers the following relief options, all of
them under penalty of one stroke;
a) Return to the teeing ground and play a ball from there.
b) Drop a ball behind the water hazard, keeping the point at
which the original ball last crossed the margin of the water
hazard (point X in the diagram below) directly between the hole
and the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how
far behind the water hazard the ball may be dropped. They would
therefore be dropping anywhere on the gold shaded line extending
from point Z in the diagram.
c)(i) Drop a ball outside the water hazard within two
club-lengths of and not nearer the hole than the point where the
original ball last crossed the margin of the water hazard (point
X). This is the smaller shaded gold arc area in the diagram
c)(ii) Drop a ball outside the water hazard within two
club-lengths of and not nearer the hole than the point on the
opposite margin of the water hazard equidistant to point X from
the hole (point Y). This is the larger shaded gold arc area in
the diagram below.
Options c)(i) and c)(ii), which permit the player to drop a ball
within two club-lengths of where the ball last crossed the
margin or an equidistant point on the other side, are not
available if the hazard is a water hazard designated with yellow
stakes and/or lines.
Yes, they may drop a different ball. When proceeding under Rule
26-1, the player may lift and clean their ball, or substitute a
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