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Dale Craig

David, I firmly believe and find myself using the “protect the field” line quite often when having to defend a rules infraction. I hate being “The Guy” who gets called a rules Nazi, but I’ve played the game long enough and taken rules seminars and played too much tournament golf to always let things go. Another experience I had last year was while playing was while I was on a par 3 and I had my back to the tee. I was preparing to putt when I heard someone in the group behind us hit a tee ball with what sounded like a driver. I stopped and asked my fellow players if one of those guys just hit. I was told that yes one of them hit a driver into the marsh. After again preparing to putt it happened again. On the next hole I went back to this group and told them that what they had just done was illegal and that striking a ball anytime during a round is putting that ball in play, only to be told that they were just hitting balls into the marsh. I told them it doesn’t matter, but I’m pretty sure they didn’t care. After the round I told the pro shop of the infraction and hoped that they assessed the required penalty. I guess maybe I just kept witnessing too many repeated rules violations in a tournament so much larger than anything I’ve ever been a part of, I didn’t think to report my original post cheater. I will definitely not be shy this year. I actually like helping people understand the rules and want them to be stewards of the game in the best way too. The one rule I am continually amazed at which isn’t a big deal is, the fact so many people don’t know how to correctly mark and move a mark on the green. Simple rule but always one I like explaining.

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