Aboyne’s Shannon and Carmen in GB&I Vagliano Trophy teams

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Aboyne’s Shannon McWilliam, who played in the Curtis Cup last year, has retained her place in the Great Britain and Ireland team for the Vagliano Trophy.

The 19-year-old has been named in an initial six-strong line-up, with two players to be added after the Women’s Amateur Championship at Royal County Down next week.

Joining McWilliam in trying to land GB&I’s first win over the Continent of Europe at Royal St George’s later this month will be English trio Alice Hewson, Lily May Humphreys and Isobel Wardle, as well as Irish pair Olivia Mehaffey and Julie McCarthy.

“We have selected a great group of players who have already this season played some wonderful golf,” said GB&I captain Elaine Ratcliffe.

McWilliam’s clubmate Carmen Griffiths has been named along with fellow 15-year-old Hannah Darling from Broomieknowe in the team for the junior equivalent, being staged at the Kent venue at the same time.

They will be bidding to help GB&I win that match for the first time since it was inaugurated in 2011, with Maria Dunne, who is captaining the side for the first time, also selecting Beth Coulter, Darcey Harry, Patience Rhodes and Ffion Tynan. “I am looking forward to working with these young golfers,” said Dunne. “The players are very much looking forward to the challenge.”

Aboyne Golf Club said: “We are absolutely delighted to have both Shannon and Carmen selected to represent GB&I in such a prestigious competition.

“It is amazing that from our small community club here on Royal Deeside we have once again kept up the long history of nurturing top female talent who have gone on to represent their country.

“All credit to Aboyne Academy who have encouraged these pupils to reach their full potential and to ScottishGolf and coach Andrew Locke for their unwavering support.

“Most importantly, congratulations to Shannon and Carmen who are now reaping all the rewards from the long hours they and their parents have dedicated to the sport. We wish them both well at Royal St George’s in Kent later this month.”

Shannon was part of the team that won the St Rule Trophy team prize at St Andrews last weekend, along with Hazel MacGarvie, the individual winner by four shots, and their captain Chloe Goadby of St Regulus.

Shannon and Chloe also won the Helen Holm Scottish Women’s Open Championship at Royal Troon in April, when they finished 15 shots clear of their closest rivals with a joint total of 425 for the three rounds.

Last year Shannon won the Border Championship at East London in South Africa.

It was a great weekend for the Aboyne girls, as Carmen Griffiths won the first Girls Barrie Douglas Scottish Junior Masters in the U18 girls’ category at Strathmore, Alyth.