Here what I wrote in Malaysia forum on Mar 16 2010: Please note what the rule guru explained regarding embedded ball on rough according the the actual rule not local rule.
The Question :
- If you play a shot and the ball is plug on slope before the hazard marker - can you remove the ball and apply "winter rules" without any penalty??
- Similar scenario, but the ball is plug inside the hazard marker (usually this is a green with water hazard), will there be a 1 stroke penalty if you remove the ball? I know you can play where it lies without incurring a penalty shot.
[ From Slicer 51
I would like to give this a try. Rule guru, please correct me if I am incorrect.
- Based on rule 25-2 Embedded ball
A ball embedded in its own pitch-mark in the ground in any closely mown area through the green may be lifted, cleaned and dropped, without penalty, as near as possible to the spot where it lay but not nearer the hole. The ball when dropped must first strike a part of the course through the green. "Closely mown area " means any area of the course, including paths through the rough, cut to fairway height or less.
understand under local rule 4b "preferred lies" and "winter rules"
Adverse conditions, including the poor condition of the course or the existence of the mud, are sometime so general, particularly during winter months, that the committee may decide to grant relief by temporary local rule either to protect the course or promote fair and pleasant play.
I guess you are correct on scenario 1st
- Since " through the green" is the whole area of the course except;
a The teeing ground and putting green of the hole being; and
b all hazards on the course
You may play where it lies without incurring a penalty shot in the hazard but remember the prohibited actions under rule rule 13-4 ( no testing the condition / touch the ground with hand or a club / touch or move a loose impediment ..)
under 1 stroke penalty, you may take dropped in hazards (the ball must be dropped must first strike a part of the course in the hazards rule 20-4c ]
[From Malaysia rule guru
Closely mown area through the green means all areas with fairway height or less grass through out the course except the teeing ground and green of the hole being played and all hazards. Example if you are playing hole no. 3, and you sliced your ball to the fairway of hole no. 4, you are entitle to embedded ball relief. But if your ball is in the rough, no free relief allowed. You either play as it lies or pay 1 stroke penalty under the unplayable lie rule and drop a ball within 2 club lengths or go inline.
However, you will notice that in Malaysia, most clubs have this local rule that says relief for embedded ball is extended to through the green, meaning this time under the local rule, even if your ball is embedded in the rough, you may take relief without any penalty but remember never when your ball is in a hazard.
Winter rule or preferred lie local rule is different from embedded ball rule. This is usually a last minute local rule announced by the committee before the start of a round when they see that condition on the course is very bad. Preferred lie rule usually applies to closely mown areas only and you may mark, lift and clean the ball and place it within 6 inches or a scorecard length or even a club length from the original spot in which the ball lied depending on how the temporary local rule is worded ]