Attending the Flagstick

Once a ball is on the green you may have the flagstick attended to help you see the location of the hole while you putt but the ball must not strike the flagstick or the person attending it. Be careful when you are asked or offer to attend the flagstick.   Stand away from the hole so that your footprints do not damage the area around the hole and on a sunny day stand where your shadow is not cast across the hole.   Make sure that the flagstick can be easily removed as occasionally it is stuck in the hole and while the player is putting be ready to remove the flagstick up out of the hole so that there is no chance that the ball may strike it.   If you get distracted and accidentally fail to remove the flagstick and the ball strikes it, the player is penalized 2 strokes in stroke play/Stableford, so you won’t be popular!   The ball is then played from where it lies.   The penalty in match play is loss of hole for the player.   When removing the flagstick place it carefully on the green – don’t fling it down risking damage to the green and replace it in the hole carefully.   You may have the flagstick attended, removed or held up from anywhere on the course not just when your ball is on the green but make your intention clear, giving your authority for it to be attended, removed or held up particularly in match play.   Have a look at Rule 17 The Flagstick and the Etiquette Section at the beginning of the Rule Book which cover all these situations.

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