Young golfer makes the cut for county coaching

Olivia Harland.

A young golfer has been given fresh drive after reaching county standard in her game.

Barnard Castle Preparatory School pupil Olivia Harland is now playing with a handicap of 35.2 after taking up the sport five years ago, encouraged by her granddad.

“He plays off 12 and acts as my coach,” said Olivia, of Newsham, near Richmond.

“He bought me my first clubs and I really got into golf. I love the feeling of hitting the ball and the calmness of golf. I would love to be a professional one day and my granddad thinks I have the potential.”

The ten-year-old plays her golf in Darlington and was Blackwell Golf Club Academy girls’ captain last year.

This year she has been selected for girls’ county golf development coaching sessions. Her longest drive to date is an impressive 197 yards and her course record from the red tees is 51.

She also enjoys playing other courses. “But it can be a bit annoying when you end up in the bunker as you don’t know where the hazards are,” she said. “One bad shot can ruin a good round.”

Prep School head of sport Martin Burgess said: “Olivia is an excellent young golfer who is showing tremendous promise. She absolutely loves golf and I can see her passion for the sport taking her all the way.”