English players selected for GB&I Vagliano Trophy teams

Gemma Clews

Four English players are in the Great Britain and Ireland team of eight which will face the Continent of Europe in the Vagliano Trophy match next month.

Gemma Clews (Image © Stills Photography), India Clyburn, Alice Hewson and Sophie Lamb will be joined by the Irish players Maria Dunne, Leona Maguire, Olivia Mehaffey and Annabel Wilson. The reserves are also English: Lianna Bailey and Hollie Muse.

In addition, three English players are in the U16 team for the Junior Vagliano Trophy match: Annabell Fuller, Lily May Humphreys and Mimi Rhodes. The reserve is Caitlin Whitehead.

The match will be played at Golf Club Bogogno in Italy on 30 June and 1 July. Elaine Farquharson-Black, who led GB&I to a memorable 11½-8½ win over the USA in the Curtis Cup last year, will captain the team and will be looking to reverse a run of five consecutive wins by the Continent of Europe.

Claire Coughlan-Ryan continues in her role as captain of the U16 team for the junior match which runs parallel to the women’s competition.

GB&I’s Vagliano chances may be boosted by the inclusion of Leona Maguire, who is currently the top ranked woman amateur in the world. Together with Mehaffey and Wilson she helped Ireland to a historic bronze medal in the Espirito Santo Trophy at the World Amateur Team Championships last year. Dunne has just won the Irish women’s open stroke play.

England players:

Gemma Clews, 22, (Delamere Forest, Cheshire), is the Welsh women’s stroke play champion and was joint runner-up in the Irish stroke play. She has also won two top scratch events this season with a combined score of 20-under par. She played in the Vagliano Trophy in 2015. She has twice helped England beat Spain, with an unbeaten record over the two mixed international matches.

India Clyburn, 20, (Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire) has won the English girls’ and Scottish U21 girls’ championships among other titles. She is a student at NC State University and has won on the US women’s college circuit. She represented England in the 2017 South American Amateur and tied 11th.

Alice Hewson, 19, (Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire) was in the winning GB&I team at the 2016 Curtis Cup and in England’s gold medal winning team at last year’s European ladies’ team championship. She is a student at Clemson University in the USA where she is the top player on the women’s golf team. She has previously played in the Vagliano Trophy and the companion junior match.

Sophie Lamb, 19, (Clitheroe, Lancashire) is the British women's stroke play champion, won the 2016 England Golf Women’s Order of Merit and was England's top scorer in the mixed international, winning all her games. She was joint runner up in last weekend’s Irish women’s stroke play, where she also helped England win the Nations Cup

Reserves: Lianna Bailey (Kirby Muxloe, Leicestershire), Hollie Muse (West Lancashire).

Junior Vagliano Trophy

Annabell Fuller, 15, (Roehampton, Surrey) reached the quarter finals of the French U18 Cartier Trophy, was third individually in the women’s European Nations Cup and runner-up in the Harder Hall women’s invitational in Florida in January. Last year, the girl international won the Sir Henry Cooper Junior Masters and had six second places.

Lily May Humphreys, 15, (Stoke by Nayland, Essex) won three big titles last year: the English U16 girls’ championship, the Fairhaven Trophies and the North of England U16s. This year she’s been runner-up in two top scratch events and reached the match play of the French U18 Cartier Trophy.

Mimi Rhodes, 15, (Burnham & Berrow, Somerset) won the U16 trophy at the recent Scottish girls’ championship, where she was eighth overall. Earlier she was seventh in the Irish U18s. Last season’s results included a top ten in the Sir Henry Cooper Junior Masters.

The team is completed by Ffion Tynan and Carys Worby of Wales and Sarah Byrne of Ireland. Reserve: Caitlin Whitehead

The format for the Vagliano Trophy is four foursomes ties each morning and eight singles matches on the afternoon of Friday 30 June and Saturday 1 July. The Junior Vagliano Trophy takes the form of three junior foursomes each morning and six junior singles matches each day.

For scoring and reports from the matches please visit Championships.randa.org.