The changes in effect since January 1st are accepted by almost every golfer on the planet. But the new rules concerning clubs is a good thing for the players with temper tantrums.
– If a player breaks his golf club in normal use, he could continue to use it.
– If it came unfit for play he could replace the club without delaying play.
– If a club was damaged because of anger, that club could not be used nor be replaced for the rest of the round
– A club that is damaged following any actions may be used for the remainder of the round
– A player may try to repair the damaged club
– It will not be possible to replace a damaged club except if the player started with less than 14 clubs
– If the club was damaged by somebody else (another player, cart, spectator, etc), it will be possible to replace a damaged club
Reasons for the change
– This Rule change will greatly simplify the complex Rules on damaged clubs.
– This change will be consistent with the overall philosophy that a player normally should play the entire round with only the clubs that he or she started with or added during the round to get to the 14-club limit.
– In 2018, the penalty for using a damaged club was too harsh: Disqualification
RULING – QUEBEC GAMES – 2014
During the Quebec Games in 2014, I see a young player missing a putt on hole # 11. He was very mad, and he hit his shoe with the putter after putting the ball in the hole. When he was walking to the next tee, he tried to repair his putter that was damaged. I went to talk to him. I had a look at the putter and the loft had been changed. I informed him that he must put the putter out of play and use another club in his bag to putt on the 7 remaining holes. He completed the round using his 3-wood….his ankle and ego was hurting.
In those days, a player was disqualified if he played a stroke with a club that had been damaged outside the normal play of a stroke. Lucky for him, he completed his putt before damaging the putter.