Will Shanshan Feng defend her title?
Will Lexi Thompson defend her title?
The answer depends on whether the player authorized the caddie to repair the ball mark. If the player authorized this action there would be no penalty. However, if there were no player authorization then the fellow-competitor would incur a two stroke penalty under Rule 1-2. Handling this situation should be done in firm but diplomatic way.
Yes. The ball's location does not affect a player's right to remove sand on the putting green.
Under Rule 28c, a player may drop a ball within two club-lengths of the spot where the ball lay, but not nearer the hole. If a player drops a ball and it rolls and comes to rest less than two club-lengths from where it first struck a part of the course, the ball is in play.
Under Rule 20-2c, when a ball comes to rest in a position from which relief was taken under Rule 24-2b (immovable obstruction), Rule 25-1 (abnormal ground conditions) or Rule 25-3 (wrong putting green), or rolls back into the pitch-mark from which it was lifted under Rule 25-2 (embedded ball), a player must re-drop.
I am answering the question based on a group of 4 ladies playing together. (See definition of “Matches”)
In Match Play, the ball farther from the hole is played first. In four-ball Match Play, balls belonging to the same side may be played in the order the side considers best.
(See Rule 10-1 and Rule 30-3c).
In Stroke Play, the ball farthest from the hole plays first. However, there is no penalty for playing out of turn unless the Committee determines that competitors have agreed to play out of turn to give one of them an advantage.
(See Rule 10-2, Rule 22 and Rule 31-5).
The rules state that for all clubs, other than a putter, the grip must be straight and plain in form. It must also extend to the end of the shaft and cannot be molded for any part of the hands. See Appendix II on page 118 of the Rules of Golf booklet.
Your ball was at rest on the putting green therefore it was in play. Unfortunately you have moved your ball in play, and, under Rule 18-2a, you incur a penalty of one stroke and the ball must be replaced. See Rule 18 regarding a ball moved, deflected or stopped.
A player is limited to 14 clubs for a round. If a player starts the round with 13 clubs he can add another club, (any club) at any time. However if a player starts the round with more than 14 clubs he incurs the penalty of two strokes for each hole he has the extra club, maximum penalty of 4 strokes. See Decision 4-, Decision 4- and Decision 4- for further clarification.