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Olivia Mehaffey selected for GB & Ireland Vagliano Trophy team

Olivia Mehaffey in action for the Arizona State University Sun Devils
Olivia Mehaffey in action for the Arizona State University Sun Devils
Adam McKendry

By Adam McKendry

Royal County Down golfer Olivia Mehaffey has been selected as a member of the Great Britain & Ireland team for the Vagliano Trophy later this month.

The team event, which sees the top female amateurs from GB & Ireland take on their counterparts from mainland Europe, will be held from 28-29 June at Royal St George's, England.

Mehaffey has been named in the initial squad and is the top-ranked of the six players already named by captain Elaine Ratcliffe, with two more players yet to join.

The 21-year-old Banbridge woman is coming off a phenomenal year for American college Arizona State, excelling for the Sun Devils in her junior year.

Having won the Bruin Wave Invitational, the PAC-12 Championship and the Norman Regional, Mehaffey was nominated for the ANNIKA Award, which recognises the top collegiate golfer of the year.

She is joined by Alice Hewson, Lily May Humphreys, Julie McCarthy, Shannon McWilliam and Isobel Wardle in the squad, with GB & Ireland aiming to win the biennial event for the first time since 2005.

The final two players will be added to the squad after the Women's Amateur Open Championship, which is being held at Royal County Down this month.

"We have selected a great group of players who have already this season played some wonderful golf and it will be an exciting contest against the Continent of Europe in Kent," said Ratcliffe.

"We will be keeping a close eye on events during The Women's Amateur Championship next week to determine the two players who will complete our team and it will provide an added incentive to those players from Great Britain and Ireland who are competing at Royal County Down."

There was also good news for Kirkistown Castle golfer Beth Coulter, who has been named in GB & Ireland's Junior Vagliano Trophy team.

The 15-year-old will make her first appearance in the team event, which is held concurrently with the senior tournament, with Maria Dunne named as captain.

A scratch golfer, Coulter has been impressing at tournaments both home and abroad having competed recently in the Major Champions Invitational in Florida.

Initial GB&I Vagliano Trophy team

Alice Hewson, 21, Berkhamsted

Shannon McWilliam, 19, Aboyne

Lily May Humphreys, 17, Stoke-by-Nayland

Olivia Mehaffey, 21, Royal County Down

Julie McCarthy, 19, Forrest Little

Isobel Wardle, 19, Prestbury

GB&I Junior Vagliano Trophy team

Beth Coulter, 15, Kirkistown Castle

Darcey Harry, 15, The Vale Resort

Hannah Darling, 15, Broomieknowe

Patience Rhodes, 15, Burnham & Berrow

Carmen Griffiths, 15, Aboyne

Ffion Tynan, 16, Minchinhampton

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