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Irish ready to take on World, says Mehaffey


By Paul Kelly

Olivia Mehaffey will lead Ireland's bid for World Championship success at Carton House in Co Kildare from August 29 to September 1.

The Banbridge golfer, ranked 21st in the world, was yesterday named in Ireland's three-person team alongside Paula Grant (Lisburn) and Annabel Wilson (Lurgan).

The Republic of Korea are defending champions following their victory in Mexico two years ago, but Ireland will present a strong home challenge having finished third in 2016 to take the bronze medal for the first time.

"I think in the past this small team format has suited Ireland, so there's no reason why we can't do well this time," said Mehaffey, who is preparing to fly out to Tennessee to compete in the US Women's Amateur Championship starting on Monday.

"We all know Carton House pretty well from playing and practising down there but, to be honest, a lot of the other teams have already made trips over to see the venue and the facilities anyway.

"From a personal point of view, it's nearly more important to have fans out there encouraging and supporting you so I hope we get some good crowds at the event."

Meanwhile, Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill will be joined by British and Irish Lions, Ireland and Ulster rugby legend Stephen Ferris and five-time European Tour winner Michael Hoey in a fun evening that will kickstart NI Open week in the heart of Ballymena.

The event will be hosted in Ballymena's Braid Centre on Tuesday, August 14 to raise funds for the Cancer Fund for Children.

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