SIXTEEN-year-old Bronagh O’Keeffe is the youngest Sandy Lodge golfer to advance to the knockout stage of the Hertfordshire ladies county championship.

Bronagh joined Sandy Lodge at Northwood this year to make full use of the club’s renowned practice area.

This paid dividends at the recent Herts ladies event at Harpenden Golf Club when she was among the top 16 players in the 36-hole strokeplay stage of the tough three-day competition.

“I received a text message telling me to be on the tee the next day at nine o’clock,” said Bronagh. “I had been drawn to play an experienced three-handicapper but managed to win. I was in a state of shock!”

Bronagh, who is juggling her golf with GCSE exams, lives in Harrow Weald and goes to school at the Sacred Heart Language College in Wealdstone.

She plans to study for A-levels before seeking a golfing scholarship at an American university.

Her next major golfing challenge is the Faldo Series England Championships at Old Fold Manor on June 16-18.

Competitors in this initiative to develop home-grown golfing talent will have a chance to qualify for the 18th Faldo Series Grand Final at The Greenbrier in West Virginia, USA, in October.

Bronagh started playing golf at the age of 10, encouraged by her father and brother, both of whom have single-figure handicaps.

Last year, in an amazing burst of form, she cut her handicap from 23 to 10 over a two-week period.