20 Questions - how well do you know the Rules?

Rules quiz questions

Welcome to our Golf Rules Quiz – either take it by completing the video quiz above or all the questions are below – answers are at the bottom of the post.

Note: When we mention the General Penalty it relates to a two-stroke penalty in stroke play or loss of hole in match play.

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 1. In stroke play, Jezz cannot identify his ball so marks and lifts it for identification without announcing his intention to his marker. What is the ruling?

A. There is no penalty
B. Jezz gets a one-stroke penalty
C. Jezz gets the general penalty

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 2. In stroke play, Fergus grounds his club in a penalty area when addressing his ball. What is the ruling?

A. There is no penalty
B. Fergus gets one penalty stroke
C. Fergus gets the general penalty

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 3. In stroke play, Jezz asks for advice on his takeaway. Fergus comments that Jezz has been taking the club too far inside on his backswing. What is the ruling?

A. There is no penalty
B. Jezz gets the general penalty
C. Jezz and Fergus both get the general penalty

Related: 7 Most Important Golf Rules

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 4. On the putting green, Jezz marks the ball by holding his putter right next to it. He lifts, cleans and then replaces the ball with the putter in place. What is the ruling?

A. There is no penalty
B. Jezz gets one penalty stroke and the ball is played as it lies
C. Jezz gets the general penalty and the ball is played as it lies

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 5. In stroke play, Fergus’ ball comes to rest near an attached divot. He presses it down and plays his shot. What is the ruling?

A. There is no penalty
B. Fergus gets one penalty stroke
C. Fergus gets the general penalty

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q6. A fixed sign on the course would interfere with Fergus’ ball stance or swing if he were to attempt to play it. What is the ruling?

A. Fergus must play the ball as it lies
B. Fergus is entitled to free relief as the sign is an immovable obstruction
C. Fergus must take penalty relief via Rule 19 – Unplayable Ball.

Related: Most Broken Golf Rules

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 7. Fergus touches sand during his backswing while playing the ball from a bunker. What is the ruling?

A. Fergus gets one penalty stroke
B. There is no penalty
C. Fergus gets the general penalty.

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 8. In stroke play, Fergus’ putt overhangs the lip of the hole. He walks up and waits eight seconds before the ball falls in. What is the ruling?

A. There is no penalty and the ball is holed
B. Fergus gets one penalty stroke and the ball is holed
C. There is no penalty, but the ball must be replaced on the lip of the hole

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 9. In stroke play, Jezz hits a poor wedge shot and hits the ground in anger with his club. He thinks the shaft may be bent. What is the ruling?

A. Jezz can continue using the club or repair it
B. Jezz gets the general penalty
C. Jezz cannot use or replace the club

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 10. In stroke play, Jezz’s ball lies in a tree whose roots are out of bounds, but the branch it lies in is inside the white line. What is the ruling?

A. Jezz’s ball is out of bounds
B. Jezz’s ball is in bounds and he must play the ball as it lies
C. Jezz’s ball is in bounds and he may play it as it lies or declare it unplayable (Rule 19)

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 11. Jezz’s ball is embedded in the grass face above a bunker. What is the ruling?

A. Jezz must play the ball as it lies
B. Jezz may play it as it lies or declare the ball unplayable
C. Jezz is entitled to free relief

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 12. In stroke play, Jezz’s ball lies on a bridge over a penalty area and he grounds his club. What is the ruling?

A. Jezz gets the general penalty
B. Jezz gets one penalty stroke
C. There is no penalty

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 13. In stroke play, Fergus leans on his club touching sand in the bunker while waiting for another player to play. What is the ruling?

A. Fergus gets the general penalty
B. There is no penalty
C. Fergus gets one penalty stroke

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 14. In stroke play, Jezz finishes the 4th hole and practises his putting on the next tee while waiting for the group ahead to clear the fairway. What is the ruling?

A. There is no penalty
B. Jezz is disqualified
C. Jezz gets the general penalty

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 15. In stroke play, Jezz hits his putt too hard and Fergus quickly moves the flagstick lying on the ground before the ball reaches it. What is the ruling?

A. Jezz gets the general penalty
B. Fergus gets the general penalty
C. There is no penalty

Related: How To Spot A Golf Cheat

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 16. In stroke play, Jezz uses a loose impediment to mark and lift his ball on the putting green. What is the ruling?

A. There is no penalty
B. Jezz gets a penalty of one stroke
C. Jezz gets the general penalty

Golf Rules Quiz

Pic Kenny Smith, Kenny Smith Photography

Q 17. In stroke play, Fergus strikes the sand in frustration after leaving his ball in the bunker with his first stroke. What is the ruling?

A. There is no penalty
B. Fergus gets a penalty of one stroke
C. Fergus gets the general penalty

Golf Rules Quiz

Q 18. In stroke play, Fergus lifts his ball as it is leaning against the flagstick, and part of the ball is below the surface of the hole. What is the ruling?

A. Fergus gets one penalty stroke and must replace the ball on the lip of the hole
B. Fergus’ ball is considered holed
C. Fergus gets one penalty stroke, but the ball is considered holed

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 19. In stroke play, Fergus makes a stroke with his driver which has a sticker on the face to see where the impact of the ball is. What is the ruling?

A. There is no penalty
B. Fergus gets the general penalty
C. Fergus is disqualified

Golf Rules Quiz

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Q 20. In stroke play, Fergus loses his footing when entering a bunker and falls into the sand. Although the ball has not moved, Fergus’ fall has accidentally worsened his area of stance and his line of play. What is the ruling?

A. Fergus may restore the conditions without penalty
B. Fergus gets the general penalty (two-strokes) but may restore the conditions
C. There is no penalty and Fergus must play the ball as it lies.

Golf Rules Quiz Answers

Q1 In stroke play, Jezz cannot identify his ball so marks and lifts it for identification without announcing his intention to his marker. What is the ruling?

Answer

A – There is no penalty. There is no requirement to announce your intention to identify your ball to a marker or anyone else (Rule 7.3).

Q 2 In stroke play, Fergus grounds his club in a penalty area when addressing his ball. What is the ruling?

Answer

A – There is no penalty. It is permissible to ground your club in a penalty area, just as you can in the general area. There are no special Rules limiting how a ball may be played from a penalty area (Rule 17.1b).

Q 3 In stroke play, Jezz asks for advice on his takeaway. Fergus comments that Jezz has been taking the club too far inside on his backswing. What is the ruling?

Answer

C – Jezz and Fergus both get the general penalty. During a round a player must not ask for advice or give advice to anyone playing in the competition on the course (Rule 10.2a).

Q4 On the putting green, Jezz marks the ball by holding his putter right next to it. He lifts, cleans and then replaces the ball with the putter in place. What is the ruling?

Answer

A – There is no penalty. It is permissible to hold a club on the ground right next to the ball for marking the spot of a ball to be lifted (Rule 14.1a).

Q 5 In stroke play, Fergus’ ball comes to rest near an attached divot. He presses it down and plays his shot. What is the ruling?

Answer

C – Fergus gets the general penalty for pressing down a divot and improving the conditions affecting his stroke (Rule 8.1a).

Q 6 A fixed sign on the course would interfere with Fergus’ ball if he were to attempt to play it. What is the ruling?

Answer

B – Fergus is entitled to free relief as the sign is an immovable obstruction. The sign is an abnormal course condition and free relief is permissible under Rule 16.1b in the general area. The ball must be dropped when taking relief from an immovable obstruction.

Q 7 Fergus touches sand during his backswing while playing the ball from a bunker. What is the ruling?

Answer

C – Fergus gets the general penalty as striking the sand on the backswing is one of the actions prohibited in bunkers under Rule 12.2b.

Q 8 In stroke play, Fergus’ putt overhangs the lip of the hole. He walks up and waits eight seconds before the ball falls in. What is the ruling?

Answer

A – There is no penalty and the ball is holed. You are allowed a reasonable time to reach your ball and then a further ten seconds to see if the ball falls into the hole (Rule 13.3).

Q9 In stroke play, Jezz hits a poor wedge shot and hits the ground in anger with his club. He thinks the shaft may be bent. What is the ruling?

Answer

A – Jezz can continue using the club or repair it. No matter the nature or cause of the damage, for the rest of the round, Jezz may use the damaged club or repair it by restoring it as near as possible to its original condition (Rule 4.1a(2)). It is worth noting that the damaged club could not be used in a play-off in stroke play, which is a new round.

Q 10 In stroke play, Jezz’s ball lies in a tree whose roots are out of bounds, but the branch it lies in is inside the white line. What is the ruling?

Answer

C – Jezz’s ball is in bounds and he may play the ball as it lies or declare it unplayable (Rule 19). If Jezz were to declare the ball unplayable, his reference point for proceeding under options B or C of this Rule would be directly below where the ball is currently lying.

Q11 Jezz’s ball is embedded in the grass face above a bunker. What is the ruling?

Answer

C – Jezz is entitled to free relief. Jezz’s ball is embedded in the face above a bunker, which, by definition, is not part of the bunker and is in the general area – one of the five defined areas of the course. In the general area a player is entitled to relief from an embedded ball (Rule 16.3).

Q 12 In stroke play, Jezz’s ball lies on a bridge over a penalty area and he grounds his club. What is the ruling?

Answer

C – There is no penalty. Just as in the general area, there are no special rules limiting how a ball may be played from the penalty area (Rule 17.1b).

Q 13In stroke play, Fergus leans on his club touching sand in the bunker while waiting for another player to play. What is the ruling?

Answer

B – There is no penalty. You can lean on a club to rest and, as long as you don’t improve the conditions affecting the stroke and are not testing the condition of the bunker, there is no penalty (Rule 12.2b(2)).

Q 14 In stroke play, Jezz finishes the 4th hole and practises his putting on the next tee while waiting for the group ahead to clear the fairway. What is the ruling?

Answer

A – There is no penalty. In between holes you are permitted to practise your putting on or near the green of the last hole played and the teeing area of the next hole (Rule 5.5b).

Q 15 In stroke play, Jezz hits his putt too hard and Fergus quickly moves the flagstick before the ball reaches it. What is the ruling?

Answer

C – There is no penalty. Rule 11.3 does not prohibit a player from moving a removed flagstick when a ball is in motion.

Q 16 In stroke play, Jezz uses a loose impediment to mark and lift his ball on the putting green. What is the ruling?

Answer

B – Jezz gets a penalty of one stroke. A ball marker must be artificial, therefore, it is not permissible to use a loose impediment and it would be a penalty of one stroke for marking a ball in a wrong way (Rule 14.1a).

Q 17 In stroke play, Fergus strikes the sand in frustration after leaving his ball in the bunker with his first stroke. What is the ruling?

Answer

A – There is no penalty. Striking the sand in frustration or anger is not a penalty, as long as the player has not improved the conditions affecting the stroke (Rule 12.2b).

Q 18 In stroke play, Fergus lifts his ball as it is leaning against the flagstick, and part of the ball is below the surface of the hole. What is the ruling?

Answer

B – Fergus’ ball is considered holed. When a ball comes to rest leaning against the flagstick left in the hole and any part of the ball is in the hole below the surface of the putting green, the ball is treated as holed (Rule 13.2c).

Q 19 In stroke play, Fergus makes a stroke with his driver which has a sticker on the face to see where the impact of the ball is. What is the ruling?

Answer

C – Fergus is disqualified. By making a stroke with a driver that has a sticker attached to the face, Fergus has used a non-conforming club as the sticker is an external attachment (Rule 4.1).

Q 20 In stroke play, Fergus loses his footing when entering a bunker and falls into the sand. Although the ball has not moved, Fergus’ fall has accidentally worsened his area of stance and his line of play. What is the ruling?

Answer

C – There is no penalty and Fergus must play the ball as it lies. Touching the sand when trying to prevent a fall does not result in a penalty. However, a player is not allowed to restore conditions affecting the stroke if the conditions are worsened by the player himself (Rules 12.2b(2) & 8.1d).

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