The Aramco Saudi Ladies International has announced that 13 major winners will be included in this year's field, highlighted by World No. 1 Lydia Ko, Lexi Thompson, In Gee Chun, Danielle Kang and defending champ Georgia Hall.
The event, which is the presented by Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund, takes place Feb. 16-19 at Royal Greens Golf and Country Club and features an upgraded purse of $5 million. More LPGA stars are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.
The 120-player field will feature 60 Ladies European Tour players, 50 from the top 300 in the Rolex Rankings and a maximum of 10 sponsor invites. The winner will receive $750,000.
The tournament's purse is up from $1 million last year and now matches the men's event, the PIF Saudi International powered by SoftBank Investment Advisers, which will be held Feb. 2-5 at Royal Greens.
"Equal pay in golf has been something that all of us in the women's game have wanted for so long," said Thompson in a release, "so seeing that huge prize purse increase at the Aramco Saudi Ladies International presented by PIF to match the men's tournament was extremely heartening. For us, it's always been about feeling equal and we are all focused on growing the game to leave in a much better place for future generation of female golfers."
In addition to the Aramco Saudi Ladies International, the 2023 LET schedule also features the Aramco Team Series, comprised of five events staged across the globe. Winners of those events last year include LPGA players Bronte Law, Nelly Korda and Thompson.
The LET's Saudi-backed events remain controversial given the wide-ranging human rights abuses Saudi Arabia has been accused of, especially toward women.
The 13 major winners in the Saudi Ladies International field boast 18 major titles between them.
Chun, a three-time major major winner, will make her first trip to Saudi Arabia later this month.
"I'm excited to finally visit Saudi Arabia," Chun said in a release. "I'm also looking forward to an event that is expected to elevate women's golf in all parts of the global community. It will definitely be a great early season challenge with a very strong field competing."
Added Hall: "It's a massive boost for the women's game, and it also goes beyond golf as it's what women in sport deserve. We are all thoroughly grateful to Golf Saudi for what it's doing for women's golf.
The Ladies European Tour begins its 2023 season this week with the Magical Kenya Ladies Open.
Here are the 13 major winners set to play later this month in Saudi Arabia (with world ranking):
No. 1 Lydia Ko
No. 7 Lexi Thompson
Lexi Thompson of the United States reacts on the 18th fairway during round two of the QBE Shootout at Tiburon Golf Club on December 10, 2022 in Naples, Florida. (Photo: Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images)
No. 8 In Gee Chun
In Gee Chun of Korea looks on prior to The Amundi Evian Championship at Evian Resort Golf Club on July 20, 2022 in Evian-les-Bains, France. (Photo: Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
No. 9 Hyo-Joo Kim
Hyo Joo Kim tees off on the 14th tee during the third round of the 2022 Lotte Championship at Hoakalei Country Club in Hawaii. (Photo: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
No. 17 Danielle Kang
Danielle Kang plays her shot from the ninth tee during the third round of the Hilton Grand Vacations Tournament of Champions at Lake Nona Golf & Country Club on January 21, 2023 in Orlando, Florida. (Photo: Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)
No. 19 Hannah Green
Hannah Green celebrates after winning the KPMG Women's PGA Championship at Hazeltine National Golf Club. (Photo: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports)
No. 21 Ashleigh Buhai
Ashleigh Buhai of South Africa looks on after playing her tee shot from the 1st hole during Day Four of the AIG Women's Open at Muirfield on August 07, 2022 in Gullane, Scotland. (Photo: Octavio Passos/Getty Images)
No. 24 Georgia Hall
Georgia Hall of England speaks in a press conference prior to the AIG Women's Open at Muirfield on August 03, 2022 in Gullane, Scotland. (Photo: Alex Burstow/R&A via Getty Images)
No. 31 Anna Nordqvist
Anna Nordqvist poses with the 2021 AIG Women's British Open trophy, the R&A Girls' Amateur Championship trophy and the Women's Amateur Championship trophy at Muirfield on August 01, 2022 in Scotland. (Photo: Oisin Keniry/R&A via Getty Images)
No. 38 Jeong Eun Lee6
Jeongeun Lee6 after winning the U.S. Women's Open at Country Club of Charleston on June 2, 2018. (Photo: Jasen Vinlove/USA TODAY Sports)
No. 47 A Lim Kim
A Lim Kim poses with the championship trophy after winning the U.S. Women's Open golf tournament at Champions Golf Club. (Photo: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports)
No. 56 Eun-Hee Ji
LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLORIDA - JANUARY 20: Eun-Hee Ji of South Korea poses with the trophy after winning the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions at Tranquilo Golf Course at Four Seasons Golf and Sports Club Orlando on January 20, 2019 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)
No. 60 Patty Tavatanakit
Patty Tavatanakit tees off on the 9th hole during the second round of the Chevron Championship at Mission Hills Country Club in Rancho Mirage, California, March 30, 2022. (Photo: Andy Abeyta/The Desert Sun)
Story originally appeared on GolfWeek