The facts : last week, a very important issue came up at a LPGA event in Asia. On the 18th hole, Ariya Jutanugarn made a chip that ended a foot from the hole. She made a move forward to mark her ball but Amy Olson asked her not to mark the ball because she was ready to make her chip.
The rule (15.3a)
If two or more players agree to leave a ball in place to help any player, and that player then makes a stroke with the helping ball left in place, each player who made the agreement gets the general penalty (two strokes)
The Committee spoke with both player and they said it was done only for Pace of Play. So the Committee did not penalize the two players.
In a previous article (June 17 2018), I talked about the habit players have to always leave the ball in place even when this could help the other players. A player said last year that he will continue to do it depending if he liked or not the other player!
If you watch carefully you will see that happening quite often.
A few decisions last weekend
* Fowler was penalized one stroke in Mexico because he dropped his ball at shoulder height and did not correct it.
* McIlroy did the same thing, but his caddie saw it and told him he could redrop the ball at knee height without penalty.
A few comments from players
* Many players think the new drop rule is unfair when we penalize a player dropping at shoulder height.
* A few players don’t like the fact that we may leave the flag in the hole.
I won’t be surprised if we see a couple of changes in a near future.