Scarva girl Olivia Mehaffey has taken another huge stride towards golfing stardom.
The 19 year-old made one of the headlines of world golf at the weekend as she played a key role in Great Britain and Ireland’s landmark victory over USA in the Curtis Cup.
It’s only the second time Team GB&I have won in the last 10 matches.
And playing in front of an Irish crowd at Dun Laoghaire, it was a bit of a fairytale for the Tandragee Golf Club member.
“No words can describe how special the feeling was on Sunday when we won,” said Olivia.
“The way it happened and to win on home soil in front of such an amazing crowd, it was just unforgettable.
“I have never been involved in anything like it. I knew the Curtis Cup was a big deal going in but you have to play in it to really understand.
“It’s just massive and much bigger than I could ever imagine.”
Olivia wasn’t just a bit-part player either. She played in all five rounds and picked up 3.5 points.
Mehaffey began the match in perfect style, partnering world number four Bronte Law to a two and one success in Friday morning’s foursomes.
She suffered her only defeat in Friday afternoon’s fourballs, losing one down alongside Charlotte Thomas.
Olivia then restored her perfect partnership with Law on Saturday and picked up two more points, the pair winning both their foursomes and fourball matches on the 16th.
“The bond within our team was amazing and we will be friends for life now,” said Mehaffey. “Our preparation leading up to the competition was so important and we mingled with the USA team a bit but always wanted to stay together with each other as Great Britain and Ireland.
“All of our hard work was done on Saturday, so to only need 2.5 points going into the final day was brilliant.” As any Ryder Cup fans knows only too well, the Americans are famed for their singles success. An unlikely comeback didn’t materialise though.
First out, Olivia ensured USA didn’t get any early momentum as she held the world amateur number one golfer Hannah O’Sullivan to an honourable half in the first match.
“We expected USA to come at us hard on the final day so to finish the job in front of such an amazing atmosphere made everything so special,” Olivia continued,
“I don’t mind leading and to have the honour of being first out, especially on the final day, was great.
“I have never been so motivated on a golf course and put 100 per cent of my heart into the Curtis Cup,it was so emotional for every player and the greatest thing I have been involved in.
“To get half a point in my singles against the best amateur in the world under those circumstances was a great feeling.
“It meant the world to us and is certainly something I will never forget.”
So that’s the biggest stage in amateur golf conquered. World golf is fast becoming Olivia Mehaffey’s oyster.