Week 11: Indicating line of play on the Putting green

Rule 8; Indicating line of play: “On the putting green”, only the player, his partner or either of their caddies may before but not during the stroke, point out the line for putting, but in so doing, the putting green must not be touched. A mark may not be placed anywhere to indicate a line for putting. From “off the green”, the player may have the line of play indicated to him by anyone.

In pointing out the perceived line of putt, you can use your , but you must not touch the green with your putter in doing so. In a stroke or competition, your fellow competitors cannot point out a line for putting.

It is the player who is penalized, for this breach. Suppose A & B are partners, and their balls are both lying on the putting green. If A were to touch the green in pointing out a line for putting to his partner B, it is player B who is penalized. Player B is disqualified from the hole but Player A is not.

In giving advice on the line of putt, you cannot deliberately place your foot or stand in such a position for the purpose of pointing out the line. If a player’s partner or caddie was to do so, and suggested aiming towards their foot, the player is subject to as soon as the caddie/partner placed their foot in that position. Deliberately placing your foot at a point on the green is akin to touching it with your putter or the flag stick. The breach cannot be corrected by the caddie/partner subsequently moving their foot. If the caddie/partner did not initially place their foot in such a position, but perhaps, whilst attending the flagstick suggested aiming at their left foot, the player would only be subject to penalty if the caddie/partner did not move that foot to another position that does not indicate the line of putting prior to the stroke being made.

Alternatively, if the player were about to play a chip shot from off the green, and their caddie/partner were to touch the green with their putter to indicate the line of play, there would be no penalty. The prohibition against touching the putting green to indicate line of play only applies if the player’s ball lies on the putting green.

PENALTY FOR BREACH OF RULE 8-2: – Loss of hole; – Two strokes

Άine Binchy 19/10/12

Above examples taken form R & A Decisions On The Rules Of 2012-2013