Holed Ball: when the ball rests on the club and the hole

17 de February de 2024

Imagine being on the green, the sun shining and the breeze caressing your face. With a steady hand and a focused gaze, you execute the perfect putt and the ball rolls towards the hole. But, what happens when, instead of falling, the ball stays precariously perched between the edge of the hole and the stick? This moment can generate both confusion and debate among players.

In golf, every detail counts and the rules are the heart of the game. The situation of a holed ball is more common than it seems, and knowing the rules about it is crucial to handle it correctly. Is the ball considered in or out? How to proceed without breaking the regulations? These questions are essential to maintain the sportsmanship and integrity of the game.

We will address the rules and etiquette of golf related to this event in a clear and direct manner. We will provide you with the necessary information so that, in your next round, you know exactly what to do when you face a holed ball. Keep calm and keep reading to become an expert in unexpected situations on the field.

What is a holed ball

A holed ball occurs when the ball, after being hit, heads towards the hole and stays supported on the edge or on the stick without falling completely. It’s that moment full of suspense where everyone holds their breath.

The image is almost poetic: the ball kisses the edge of the hole and stays in a delicate balance. Will it fall? Will it stay there? In golf, this is not only a matter of luck but also of patience and knowledge of the rules. The way you proceed can change the outcome of the game.

The fate of a holed ball can depend on various factors, including the wind, the slope of the terrain, or even the vibrations of the ground. Players often wait with hope that gravity will finally do its job and the ball completes its journey to the bottom of the hole.

This situation can generate both relief and frustration. On one hand, you are a breath away from scoring; on the other, a stroke of bad luck can leave your efforts on the cusp of success without reward. But calm down, the rules of golf offer solutions for these moments of uncertainty.

What is the rule that analyzes the holed ball

In golf, every detail counts, and there are specific rules that apply when the ball is in a delicate situation like being supported on the stick and the edge of the hole. The Rule 13.2a of the golf regulations is the one that comes into play in this circumstance. This rule analyzes what happens with a ball that has been hit towards the hole and stops on the edge.

According to this rule, if the ball stops on the edge and falls into the hole within the next three seconds, it is considered holed. This means that the stroke counts and you can score with confidence. However, if the ball takes its time and decides to fall after those three seconds, the situation changes.

If the ball remains on the edge and falls into the hole after more than three seconds, it is not considered holed in that stroke. In this case, you will have to add an additional stroke to your scorecard. It’s a detail that can have a big impact on your game, so it’s essential to be attentive to the clock.

It’s important to remember that, while waiting to see if the ball falls into the hole, you must not alter any condition that could affect it. This includes not touching the ground or the stick, as doing so could incur penalties.

The holed ball on the stick and the edge of the hole is an event that is governed by clear rules to ensure fairness in the game. Knowing these rules will allow you to handle the situation with confidence and precision. So keep calm, count to three, and play according to the rules!

Bonus: Can a ball be holed when there is already another ball in the hole

We’ve all been there: you’re about to close with a flourish and you find that the hole is already occupied. But did you know that you can hole your ball even if there’s another inside? We tell you how.

First, the general rule in golf is clear: if a ball rests in the hole, any other ball that falls will be considered holed. This, as long as no act is performed to alter the position of the first ball.

In the case that the first ball is in motion inside the hole, for example, if it’s spinning around the edge and your ball enters, you must wait for it to stop. If your ball enters before the other settles, both are valid.

But, what happens if the ball that is in the hole is interfering with your putt? In that case, the golf rules allow the obstructing ball to be marked and temporarily removed. Thus, you give space to your shot so it can be holed without inconvenience.

Always remember to play fair and follow the rules of golf. Respecting the game is as important as achieving a good score. So now you know, there’s no excuse not to move forward and hole that ball!

In the exciting world of golf, every stroke counts and every situation can be crucial. Knowing what to do when the ball is holed makes the difference between a novice player and one with solid knowledge. Don’t let uncertainty hit you: know the rules and manage the game in your favor.

Remember, if you find yourself with the ball supported on the stick and the hole, take a moment to evaluate. Patience is your ally, and the rules your guide. If the ball falls by itself while you respect that time, your ability to keep calm will be rewarded. If not, you know you must play it as it lies, with the same skill with which you face each challenge on the field.

Share your experience with other golfers. Every match is an opportunity to learn and teach, and situations like the holed ball become anecdotes that enrich our love for golf. We accompany you in every swing, in every putt, and in every victory. May your next rounds be filled with precise shots and firm knowledge!



We are that group of green enthusiasts who have been analyzing every club, ball, and accessory that comes our way for over 20 years.

We want you to feel that, when you read one of our analyses, it's like getting advice from those friends with whom you share the field every weekend. If something is not clear or you want to know more, do not hesitate to ask!

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