..... Nearest Point of Relief

References are to the Definition of Nearest Point of Relief, unless otherwise noted.

Q1: There is only one nearest point of relief for a ball at rest. True or False?

A1: False, but only just! In a small minority of cases it is possible that there are two equidistant nearest points of relief, but this is unusual.

Q2: When a ball lies in the centre of an artificial path the nearest point of relief is the same for a left-handed player as for a right-handed player. True or False?

A2: False. Due to the area required for stance the nearest point of relief is on opposite sides of the path for left-handed and right-handed players.

Q3: In order to determine the nearest point of relief, which club should the player use? a) The longest club in their bag. b) The club with which they would have made their next stroke if the interference was not there. c) Any club in their bag.

A3: b) The club with which they would have made their next stroke if the interference was not there. Definition of Nearest Point of Relief.

Q4: In the diagram, what is the nearest point of relief for a right-handed player for balls A, B and C, using the numbered reference points W, X, Y or Z?

A4: X1, Z2 and W3. Note: Remember that the player's stance has to be taken into account.

Q5: In stroke play, what is the penalty if a player lifts their ball and then replaces it and plays it from the original position when they realise that the nearest point of relief means they would be dropping in an unfavourable position? a) There is no penalty. b) There is a penalty of one stroke. c) There is a penalty of two strokes.

A5: b) There is a penalty of one stroke. Decision 18-2a/12.

Q6: If a player's ball is on the putting green and there is casual water on their line of intended putt, they may take relief from the interference by placing their ball at the nearest point of relief that is not in a hazard and play from there. True or False?

A6: True. Rule 25-1b(iii).

Q7: In the photo, the whole of a bunker has been declared as ground under repair through the green. Which is the reference point for determining the nearest point of relief; point A, where the ball last crossed the margin of the bunker, or point B, where the ball lies visible in the bunker?

A7: Point B, where the ball lies visible in the bunker. Rule25-1b(i).

Q8: When a player takes relief without penalty from a hole made by a burrowing animal, they must drop a ball at the nearest point of relief, not nearer the hole. True or False?

A8: False. The permitted area of relief is anywhere within one club-length of the nearest point of relief, not nearer the hole.

Q9: A player's ball lies just inside a bunker and there is interference to their intended stance from plastic lining in the bunker that has become exposed. The nearest point that avoids interference from the plastic lining is just outside of the bunker, so this is the nearest point of relief for determining where relief may be taken from the immovable obstruction. True or False?

A9: False. When there is interference by an immovable obstruction to a ball that is in a bunker the reference point is the nearest point of relief that is in the bunker and is not nearer the hole. Rule 24-2b(ii).

Good golfing,