Lincoln Land Charity Championship: Fairly Taking Your Stance
Lincoln Land Charity Championship – Web.com Tour
The Rules of Golf are not always black and white. That’s when the Decisions Book can come in handy to clarify things. Case in point…Decision 13/2-1 under Rule 13-2, which deals with improving your lie, area of intended stance or swing, or line of play.
A great example of this occurred during a ruling I had with Rafael Campos on the 11th hole during the 3rd of the Web.com Tour’s Lincoln Land Charity Championship in Springfield, Illinois. Campos’ ball came to rest under the outermost, low hanging branches of an evergreen tree. He asked for a ruling to inquire about what he was allowed to do in addressing the ball to play his next stroke. I told him he would not be penalized as long as he “fairly took his stance.” Decision 13/2-1 is one of the most valuable decisions in the book as it explains in great detail exactly what that means.
“In short, I told him he needed to take his stance in the “least intrusive” manner.”
In short, I told him he needed to take his stance in the “least intrusive” manner. The decision spells out the meaning of those words to be the “minimum improvement in the position or lie of the ball, area of intended swing or line of play.”
In this particular case, there was one cluster of branches that extended out over his ball. Often times, the least intrusive manner is for the player to simply back into the branches to take his stance. However, as shown by the photos above that re-created the situation, Campos was able to slide his legs in between the branches to take his stance with minimal change in their position. Therefore, that is the method he had to adopt to position his feet for his next stroke.