Mud balls have actually existed due to the fact that golfers an initial took come the fairways – and also they’re typical during the 2020 Masters.

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But probably no duo has actually done much more to publicise the dirt ball’s undesirability 보다 the now-defunct cooperation of Tiger Woods and also Steve Williams.

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Many’s the moment that Tiger Woods was heard to utter, “Goddamn mud ball, Stevie!” together his sphere flew erratically offline, some means from its to plan target.

Why does a mud ball existing such a trouble for golfers?

Basically, when there’s mud on the ball it can have an effect on trip trajectory, shape and also distance.

While that true that the sphere will frequently move in the contrary direction to the side the mud is on, that’s not constantly the case.

And if the mud is on top, it may spin the sphere too much and balloon up in the air, costing the player distance and accuracy.

Far from a precise science

But note the usage of the word ‘may’ in the last sentence.

The difficulty with the mud ball is that it is unpredictable with a huge variety of variables in ~ play.


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The trouble with the mud sphere is that it is unpredictable (Photo: Getty Images)


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Tiger was able to chip close and also save par top top his an initial hole in this year’s Masters despite a mud sphere on his strategy shot (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)


If there’s one course wherein you don’t require the added uncertainty of a mud ball, it’s Augusta national – an especially the earlier nine with all the water.

Any rule assistance?

So, execute the rules of Golf pertained to the rescue in ~ all?

Well, no, no really unless a Local preeminence permitting wanted lies is in force. Both the PGA Tour and European Tour periodically use together a Local preeminence in soggy conditions.

In the UK, we typically play preferred lies on the fairways with the winter months. This permits us come lift, clean and place the sphere within a mentioned distance – frequently six inch or a club-length.

Generally, there will certainly be no preferred lies in the rough.

But committees can, in impressive circumstances, allow lift, clean and replace in the general area (i.e. The rough too) in locations of the course wherein it is needed.

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Assuming The master Committee doesn’t sanction such local Rules this week, the only time players will be able to clean mud from their round (other than when they reach the safety and security of the placing green) is if their round embeds in its very own pitchmark.


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Without a local Rule, relief is only easily accessible for a ball installed in its own pitchmark (Credit: The R&A)