It is a matter of fact whether an outside agency makes off with your ball and for that, you require virtual certainty. A "strong case" might well not reach that standard.
If the referee's decision was that there wasn't virtual certainty and you just ignored him and carried on, you wouldn't last long in the tournament.
A player does not have a right to a "second opinion" if the referee has the authority to make a final decision. If he doesn't have that authority then 3-3 can be invoked.
If the chief referee did get involved and also ruled that there wasn't virtual certainty and you ignored him, you wouldn't last long in the tournament.
If you played a second ball without authority your score with the original ball would count plus a 2 stroke penalty for undue delay.
I might have used the phrase “virtual certainty”. That was what I was thinking.
Now as to Rules Officials. In stroke events invariably hand held two way radio device connection to the chief referee is on hand. Even if the RO on hand refused on basis of his formal authority there is a big stink in the wind. This would not be good for officialdom at the tournament.
If contact was made with the chief referee he would most likely attend as soon as a Cart could get him there.
If forced to accept lost Ball by the RO without a review at the time I would, not necessarily do so with good grace. It would depend on the pomposity or otherwise of the RO.
I will give an example of Officialdom going to an extreme trouble at a tournament.
Place Victoria Golf Club. Important Women’s Professional event. Possibly The Australian Open. Ball sliced from tee by Asian lady who was memorable for introducing VOLVIK balls in OZ in tournament play.
The Ball was just out of bounds at a boundary fence.
The official ruled accordingly.
Lady requests review of his ruling.
TV is present and gives a very good view. It seems obvious that the Ball is OOB by definition.
There might have been some language issues too.
Anyway it as reviewed as requested after some delay. At the time I thought....this is a matter of fact, readily eyeballed by a National Referee. They are being very pollite and cooperative with this player.
Back to Cambodia the discussion is hypothetical. We don’t know the Topography and the condition of the turf, width of fairways and other possible factors.
It would be good if that pompous RO was somewhere else. Two balls could be played and the matter resolved amicably with THE COMMITTEE in due course.
On that point it would s doubtful that many professionals would have invoke the Rule, just prefer to get on with play.