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Canterbury Golf Referees Assocation









Provisional Ball Facts

When a provisional ball has not yet become the ball in play, it must be abandoned when :
a)      The original ball is found on course,  outside penalty area, and within the three minute search time OR
b)     The original is found in penalty area or is known or virtually certain to be in penalty area

In either case, further play with the provisional  will incur the wrong ball penalty, and all strokes ( including penalties) with that ball do not now count.
Here are some applications of the rules concerning playing v. abandoning a provisional: 

So long as the original has not yet  been found in bounds, the score with a provisional that has been holed, becomes the player’s score for the hole when the player lifts the ball from the hole. In this case,  lifting the ball from the hole is the same as making a stroke e.g. a provisional played from a par three tee, is holed, and then taken out of the hole, even if the original is subsequently found within the three minute search time.
If a player lifts their provisional ball when not permitted to do so, and the provisional subsequently becomes the ball in play, the player must add one penalty stroke and replace the ball e.g.  a player believes they have found their original, plays it, and  lifts the provisional. It transpires that it was a wrong ball that the player hit, and the original cannot be found. The player now incurs the one shot penalty for the lifting, and a two shot penalty for the wrong ball. Therefore, if the provisional was a 2nd teeshot, the player is now about to play his/her seventh.



Canterbury Golf Referees Association (CGRA) is available to help Canterbury Golf Clubs with any of the following:

The CGRA committee can be contacted via email on or phone as below:           

President Kevin Gwatkin 021 024 65606
Vice President Rosemary Parker 021 256 4271
Treasurer  Jenny Tilson 021 430 016
Secretary Bruce Grant 022 422 7251
Committee Anthony Alberts 021 247 7557
  Owen Tough 021 163 4221
  Chris Zanchetta 020 4109 6096
Referees' Convenors Owen Tough 021 163 4221
  Jim Woods 027 334 4997
Rulings & Local Rules Kevin Gwatkin 021 024 65606
  Anthony Alberts 021 247 7557
  Jenny Tilson  021 430 016 

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