USGA

USGA, R&A update video and other rules

Far Hills, NJ (SportsNetwork.com) - The United States Golf Association and the Royal & Ancient Golf Club announced on Tuesday that they have updated a rule regarding video evidence of a ball moving.

The updated rule states, "where enhanced technological evidence shows that a ball has left its position and come to rest in another location, the ball will not be deemed to have moved if that movement was not reasonably discernible to the naked eye at the time. The Decision ensures that a player is not penalized under Rule 18-2 in circumstances where the fact that the ball had changed location could not reasonably have been seen without the use of enhanced technology."

The new decision will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2014 and will be part of the 2016 Rules, the next time the Rules of Golf are officially updated.

The rules committee will also review usage of video evidence in regards to marking, lifting and replacing a ball, finding an estimate relief point and the overall question of appropriate penalty for returning an incorrect score card, where a player was unaware a penalty had been incurred.

The USGA and R&A committee will continue its position of considering all evidence, regardless of source, to determine the facts involved in any ruling. All evidence includes statements from witnesses, regardless of whether that witness is a fellow competitor, a spectator or someone viewing the television footage.

The committee may make or review a ruling at a later time if further information is gained prior to the end of that competition.

The rules committee also added a few changes for 2014-15. First, players may access weather reports on a smart phone during a round without breaching the rules.

As stated above, a ball will not be deemed to have moved if that movement was not detectable by the naked eye.

Illustrations may be used to consider whether or not a golf ball is embedded in the ground.

Finally, a player may walk as many as 50 yards forward of where a ball may have been lost without forfeiting his or her right to go back and play a provisional ball.

11/19 14:04:55 ET

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