120 players will battle it out to be crowned Aramco Saudi Ladies International Champion, competing for the largest prize fund outside of the Majors on the LET
In what is set to be one of the biggest weeks for the LET, outside of the Majors, Georgia Hall is ready to begin her 2023 season at the Aramco Saudi Ladies International where she stormed to her second LET title last year.
The English superstar recorded a sensational five-shot victory around Royal Greens Golf & Country Club after carding rounds of 69, 69, 68 and 71.
This year’s Aramco Saudi Ladies International presented by Public Investment Fund sees a five-fold increase in the prize fund from US$1m to US$5m, which sees parity with the men’s PIF Saudi International powered by SoftBank Investment Advisers. It also offers the largest prize fund outside of the Majors on the LET.
Hall has made some changes in the off-season with different clubs in the bag and has been working hard ahead of her season-opener.
“It's been really nice,” said the Major champion. “I had two to three months off. It's been a little bit more of a hectic off-season for me.
“I had a few changes club-wise, so I've been testing a lot. I'm not someone who likes to change. I have just been working hard at that really, and I feel I'm happy with my full bag. I’m excited to start here in Saudi this week.”
Wind is always a factor, especially when playing in the afternoon, but in the 2022 edition Hall was peerless when tackling the strong gusts.
With a world-class field of LET and LPGA stars in attendance including 12 of the top 20 in the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings, Hall is ready for her game to be tested.
“I think it's going to be very windy again,” said Hall, who finished tenth in the 2022 Race to Costa del Sol.
“It is one of the windiest weeks that I've been here, which is nice. I think it's a good test. I will definitely work on my low shots, especially off the tee as well. It's a very strong field this year and will be harder to win for anyone. I’m really excited to get going tomorrow.
“I think this week is actually the best I've seen the condition of the course. Some tees have been pushed back, so I think scores may not be as low as previous years.”
Hall will be teeing it up in round one at 11.56am alongside American Lexi Thomspon and Japan’s Nasa Hataoka.
Ko looking to inspire future generations
The 2021 Aramco Saudi Ladies International champion is also in the field. Lydia Ko put on a dominant display to win by five shots 16 months ago.
Since then New Zealander has won three titles on the LPGA Tour, ascended to world number one in the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings for the first time in five years, and got married to leave her primed to achieve even more success in 2023.
Ko is full of excitement as she looks to regain her title on a historic week for women’s golf and the LET:
“I’m excited to get my 2023 started and be back here where I had a lot of great memories,” she said. “I think the level of field and the players are even better this time around than in 2021, so I think it’s going to be another great week here.
“These last couple days here the weather has been really beautiful, and it’s actually been pretty breezy. I think in ways it’s going to play a little tougher, but I’m excited.
“This is probably one of the biggest accolade events in Saudi Arabia, so hopefully all of us that came over can put on a good show for the people and inspire more juniors to pick up the game and dream of maybe playing this event in their future.”
Aramco Saudi Ladies International format
120 players, 72-hole stroke play, cut to top 60 professionals and ties after 36 holes.
There will be live coverage from the Aramco Saudi Ladies International - you can find out where to view the coverage in your region here.
Boasting a $5 million prize fund and a star studded field - here's why this week is a big week for women's professional golf - find out more.