Adjacent Balls in Bunker
Question: - My ball lies next to my opponent's ball in a bunker. What do we do?
(This recently occurred during the 1st round of The Open).
Answer: - The following prceedure must be used:-
1. The ball nearest to the hole must be marked and lifted.
If it is too close it can be marked 1 or 2 putter head lengths away from its spot.
This is the same procedure used when a ball is on the line of your putt on the putting green.
(NB you are allowed to touch the sand with your putter when measuring . (Rule 13-4 exception 1a)
2. The player furthest from the hole plays their shot.
3. The bunker can then be raked from where the ball was played and the stance area (but not any footprints).
4. The 2nd ball is placed (not dropped) in its original position.
If the ball was buried or half buried it must be replaced exactly as it was before it was lifted and the original lie must not be improved. (You can not clean the ball or you will incur a one stroke penalty.)
5. The 2nd ball can then be played.
6. The bunker can now be raked.