What’s the 10-second rule for a ball teetering on the edge of the hole?

How long do you *really* have to allow a ball on the edge to drop into the hole?

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The Rules of Golf are tricky! Thankfully, we’ve got the guru. Our Rules Guy knows the book front to back. Got a question? He’s got all the answers.

Your tee shot on a par-3 ends up teetering on the edge of the hole. It takes your group a minute to get from the tee to the green. As you approach the putting surface, the ball drops in the hole. Does the 10-second rule apply? Is the shot still an ace or a birdie due to a one-stroke penalty? — Tim Metcalf, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

Rules Guy should keep you waiting 10 seconds for his answer to this cliff-hanger to build up the drama … but won’t. It’s a hole in one.

ground under repair
Rules Guy: Do I *have* to take a drop from Ground Under Repair?
By: Rules Guy

Under Rule 13.3(a), you get a reasonable amount of time to reach the hole before those precious 10 seconds commence. Given that the player here hasn’t even reached the green yet and clearly isn’t delaying doing so to give the ball extra time to fall in, the ball is holed with the last stroke, which in this case was the first stroke. Simple as that!

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Got a question about the Rules? Ask the Rules Guy! Send your queries, confusions and comments to rulesguy@golf.com. We promise he won’t throw the book at you.

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