Adjacent balls in bunker

Question: -

My ball lies next to my opponent’s ball in a bunker. What do we do?

This scenario occurred during the 1st round of the 2010 Open.

Answer: -

This is very simple if you follow the 5 steps below: -

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 then 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 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.

5. The 2nd ball can then be played and the bunker raked