International competitions routinely provide some of the best drama in golf and the UL International Crown did not disappoint. Adding to the already high stakes was an interesting rules situation on the second day of the event. Scheduled to compete against Japan in a fourball match, the English team of Mel Reid and Charley Hull found themselves in an interesting situation.
About 45 minutes before she was going to tee off, Reid learned her team’s star, Charley Hull, was probably going to be too ill to play. Hull began feeling an asthma attack coming on Thursday at a sponsor dinner, and she woke the following morning feeling worse, struggling with her condition and a fever. Under a doctor’s advisement after arriving at the course, she pulled herself out of the fourball match against Japan.
That meant Reid was left to take on the Japanese in a best-ball format all by herself.
Reid began the round playing two vs. one in a best ball format. With Hull sidelined, yet still contemplating playing, the Rules of Golf had to be checked. Rule 30 – Three-Ball, Best-Ball and Four-Ball had the answer to whether or not she could join Reid mid-round to help out her team and country.
a. Representation of Side
A side may be represented by one partner for all or any part of a match; all partners need not be present. An absent partner may join a match between holes, but not during play of a hole.
Hull ultimately chose to preserve her health and allow Reid to play two-on-one, nearly pulling off the upset. But if Hull wanted to help her fellow countrywoman out, she would have been allowed under the rules, so long as she joined up at the beginning of a hole and not in the middle of one.
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