Joe . . .
The opponent would be penalized for starting a round with more than fourteen clubs, as the Rules do not permit carrying excess clubs during a round that have been declared out of play, either in a golf bag or on the floor of the
The first step could be for you to inform the opponent to get rid of the clubs from his bag or his cart before play begins. There would be no penalty if he complies.
If the dicovery is made and you file a claim during the first hole, one hole
is deducted from the state of the match.
If you won the first hole, you are two up after the first hole. If the first hole is halved, you’re one up. If you lost the first hole, the match is all square.
If the discovery is made and the claim is filed later in the match, the maximum deduction for the opponent is two holes, and the application would be the same as outlined above.
In our club championship last year my opponent showed up at the first tee with sixteen clubs in his bag. He declared an extra putter and an extra driver “out of play,” and placed them on the floor of his cart. Is he allowed to do this, and if not, how should I handle such a situation in the future?