26-2. BALL PLAYED WITHIN WATER HAZARD. a. Ball comes to rest in Same or Another Water Hazard

“Play the course as you find it; play the ball as it lies. If you can’t do either then play fair. In order to play fair, you need to know the rules of golf.”

Congratulations to Brittany Lang, after 47 Major starts, on winning the US Women’s Open in July. Her playoff win was unfortunately shrouded by another USGA rules controversy – that’s two in consecutive months for the USGA. This month, I would like to elaborate on the options provided by Rule 26-2. Some amendments became effective on 01 January 2016.

Note: If the player proceeds under Rule 26-1a by dropping a ball in the hazard as near as possible to the spot from which the original ball was played (at B), but elects not to play the dropped ball, he may then proceed under option (i) above (at A), Rule 26-1b (at D) or, if applicable Rule 26-1c. If he does so, he incurs a total of two penalty strokes: the penalty of one stroke for proceeding under Rule 26-1a, and an additional penalty of one stroke for then proceeding under option (i) above (at A), Rule 26-1b (at D) or Rule 26-1c.