May a player
use a loose impediment, such as a twig or a leaf that they found
lying on the green, to mark the position of their ball on the
May a player use a blemish on the surface of the putting
green to mark the position of their ball?
Yes (but it is
Yes, (but it
is not recommended)
physical mark must be used.
The Note to Rule 20-1 states;
The position of a ball to
be lifted should be marked by placing a ball-marker, a
small coin or other similar object immediately behind
However, the word "should"
indicates that this is a recommendation of best practice and
a player is not penalised if they use an object that is not
similar to a ball-marker or small coin to mark the position
of their ball.
Decision 20-1/16 includes these examples of methods of
marking the position of a ball that are not recommended, but
placing the toe of a
club at the side of, or behind, the ball;
Under Rule 20-1 it is
necessary to physically mark the position of the ball, so
reference to a blemish on the ground does not constitute
marking the position of a ball.
using a tee;
using a loose