9th @BrokenhurstGC – No Play Zone

The 9th at Brokenhurst is a Par 5 for ladies and a tough Par 4 for men to finish the front nine. Playing slightly up hill and often into the wind you need to be on your game.

One of the delights of playing the course is the wildlife you will see on your way round – especially if your game is early morning or in the evening. Looking across to the 16th this morning we spotted a small group of deer on the edge of the wood.

You will have seen the blue post in the foreground of the video of the deer – so what does it mean? At Brokenhurst the blue posts indicate a No Play Zone (have a look at the local rules to confirm how your course identifies them).

It doesn’t take a genius to work out the a No Play Zone means what it says! You are not allowed to play from this area and that includes if there is any interference to your stance or area of intended swing, as well as if your ball lies within it. If you were to play the ball without taking complete relief you would be given a General Penalty (2 strokes or loss of hole) for playing from the wrong place under Rule 14.7a.

In the general area, a bunker, or on the green the No Play Zone is an Abnormal Course Condition and you must take free relief under Rule 16.1 b, c, or d as appropriate. (But note that there is no free relief if it is clearly unreasonable to play a ball which lies outside the Abnormal Course Condition because of something other than the Abnormal Course Condition 16.1a(3) – in this case you would have to take an unplayable lie).

In a Penalty Area, if your ball is in a No Play Zone you must use Rule 17 to take relief under penalty of 1 stroke. If your ball is in the Penalty Area but not in the No Play Zone and there is interference with your stance or area of intended swing you will also have the option of taking free relief from the No Play Zone in a similar manner and with similar restrictions to using Rule 16 but with the additional stipulation that the Relief Area must be within that same Penalty Area (Rule 17.2e(2)). If such a Relief Area does not exist you will need to take penalty relief using Rule 17.

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