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situations, the standard for determining why a ball moved has now changed. The " known or virtually certain" standard (meaning at least 95% likely) will apply to all questions of fact about why a ball at rest moved. "A player, opponent or outside influence will be found to have caused the ball to move if the player, opponent or out- side influence was known or virtually cer- tain to have caused it to move; otherwise it will be assumed that natural forces c aused it to move." Repairing Damage on the Putting Green and Touching Line of Play You will now be able to repair almost any damage on the putting green. "Damage on the putting green" will be defined to include all types of damage (such as ball-marks, shoe damage, indentations from a club or flagstick, animal damage, etc.), except aeration holes, natural surface imperfections or natural wear of the hole. There will also be no penalty for touching your line of play on the putting green. You may still be subject to a penalty for improving your line of play though. Ball Played From Putting Green Hits Flagstick Left in Hole There will be no penalty if a ball played from the putting green strikes the flagstick left in the hole. You will still have the option to have the flagstick attended or removed. Areas of the Course There will be five areas of the course. 1. The General area. This area covers the entire course except for the four specific areas of the course. It c overs the area where your ball will most be played. 2. Four Specific Areas: a. The teeing area the player must use to start play of the hole. b. Penalty Areas (formerly known as water hazards, but can also now include other areas the Committee marks, such as heavily w ooded areas or jungle areas). c. Bunkers. d. Putting Green. How to Drop a Ball within a Relief Area You will now drop a ball from knee height, and the ball must fall through the air. You will drop a ball in a specific relief area. This relief area will either be one or two club- lengths from your reference point, depend- ing on the situation and will be defined by the longest club in your bag (except putter). The ball dropped at knee height must land in and come to rest in the relief area. Pace of Play There are several other changes coming to the New Rules of Golf. Some of them have a direct positive impact on pace of play. The time permitted for searching for a lost ball will be reduced from five minutes to three minutes. The Rules recommend that a player take no more than 40 seconds to make a stroke and encourage a player to play out of turn in a safe and responsible way. A new local rule is available that permits committees to allow golfers an alternative to the stroke-and-distance penalty for lost balls or balls hit out of bounds. Under the local rule, which is not intended for professional or elite-level competition, golfers can opt to drop the ball in the vicinity of where they lost or hit the ball out of bounds—including in the nearest fairway area—under a two- s troke penalty. This local rule helps prevent the negative impact on pace of play when a player must return to the tee under stroke and distance, this keeps the player moving forward on the golf course. Again, this local rule is not intended for professional or elite level competitions, but at the club level. The goal was to create Rules that are easier to understand and apply. New easy to read materials will become available at the end of 2018. New Player's Edition of the Rules of Golf: Full rules relevant to the golfer, written in the second person, that's intended for golfers. Easy to read and understand for a player to help them play the game. The Rules of Golf:The full edition, writ- ten in the third person that will include illustrations. What we know as today's Rules of Golf. The Official Guide to the Rules of Golf: The publication that will replace the Deci- sions book intended for use by tournament committees and rules officials. There are still seven months of golf to be played under the current Rules of Golf. Cur- rently, you can find several dozen "How to Apply" videos on the USGA website deal- ing with 2019 Rules of Golf. The USGA and R&A are waiting until the fall to release a comprehensive education initiative on the new Rules. The CGA will be conducting Rules of Golf Seminars beginning in early 2019 covering the 2019 Rules of Golf. ■ S U M M E R 2 0 1 8 | CAROLINAS GOLF | 21

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