Rules Guy: Can you caddie for your cart mate while playing your own match?

August 6, 2019
Golfers in cart

The Rules of Golf are tricky! Thankfully, we’ve got the guru. Our Rules Guy knows the book front to back. Got a question? He’s got all the answers.

On my home course, a friend and I are each playing a singles match in the same foursome against other opponents. If my friend labels me his caddie at the start of the round, can I give him advice during his match, even though I’m playing my own match concurrently? We will be riding, so I definitely won’t be carrying his clubs. —KEVIN WOODS, BELMONT, CALIF.

“Neither a borrower nor a lender be,” Polonius advises his son Laertes in Hamlet. In his unpublished play Golf and the Man*, Shakespeare writes, “Either a golfer or a caddie be.” And as we know, the Bard knew his stuff, on and off the course. Can you legally multitask as both competitor and looper? Verily, you cannot. The player would be penalized the general penalty under Rule 10.2a each time he asked your considered opinion. Remember, “Always the wrong person gives you the right lesson in life.”**

* Please, scholars, save your letters and e-mails: This is pure malarkey.
** This is indeed Shakespeare.

Got a rules question? Of course you do! Whatever it may be, send yours to [email protected] and the question may be answered in an upcoming issue of GOLF. Until then, play by the Rules!