Rules of Golf: Casual water in a bunker

The recent rains across Australia has seen many flooded golf courses and casual water in bunkers has been an issue. But what is the ruling if you find you ball in one?

Barry Rhodes from the Rules of Golf website recently covered the rules relating to casual water and there’s a few options available. Golf rule 25-1b covers the details but in short:

1) You can play it as it lies. You don’t have to take relief.

2) You can take relief without penalty by dropping the ball in the bunker. No re-drop for an embedded ball, sorry. This seems pretty harsh considering the bunker was in a poor state to begin with.

The third option surprised me:

3) You can drop outside the bunker under penalty of one stroke. Rule 25-1b states you may drop:
Under penalty of one stroke, outside the bunker, keeping the point where the ball lay directly between the hole and the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how far behind the bunker the ball may be dropped.

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