Saudi Arabia will stage a new snooker tournament and offer a prize fund of £2 million ($2.5 million) as part of a 10-year agreement with the World Snooker Tour.

The Saudi Arabia Snooker Masters will launch in Riyadh in August and become the fourth ‘major’ on the sport’s calendar.

In addition, the country will also stage the 2024 World Pool Championship, the flagship event of the World Nineball Tour, in Jeddah.

The World Snooker Tour and World Nineball Tour agreed to the partnership with the Saudi Arabian Billiard and Snooker Federation and the Ministry of Sport for Saudi Arabia.

The deal will begin with the 2024 World Pool Championship which will be held from June 3 to 8.

A record World Nineball Tour prize fund of $1 million will be awarded.

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Then, from August 31 to September 7 in Riyadh, the inaugural Saudi Arabia Snooker Masters – featuring the world’s leading players – will take place.

It will sit alongside the World Snooker Championship, the invitational Masters, and the UK Championship – the traditional Triple Crown events – as a major.

A prize pot of over £ 2 million will make it the second richest event on the World Snooker Tour schedule in 2024.

The Saudi Arabia Snooker Masters will be a world ranking event open to all 128 tour players, plus six local wild cards from the Saudi Arabian Billiard and Snooker Federation.

Matchroom Sport chairman Eddie Hearn said: “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has forged a reputation for growth and creating new opportunities for sports to grow in a new market to new fans.

“The country has hosted some of the world’s premier sporting events in recent years. The addition of both the Saudi Arabia Snooker Masters and World Pool Championship over the next decade further enhances that.

“We have seen the incredible impact boxing has had in this region. Now, I believe we will see billiards cement its legacy here too, creating incredible opportunities and competition.”

Nasser Saab Al-Shammari, Saudi Arabia Billiard and Snooker Federation president, added: “The introduction of two brand new global events in Saudi Arabia with long-term deals in place is an absolute game-changing moment for our sports. This will undoubtedly accelerate our progress and development."     

The kingdom is now expanding into snooker following recent heavy investment in golf, Formula 1, soccer, and boxing.

The country has also recently added tennis to its sports hosting portfolio as it was announced earlier this month half a dozen of the world’s top male tennis players will compete in an exhibition tournament in Riyadh in October.

The Six Kings Slam event will form part of the Saudi cultural and entertainment festival Riyadh Season and feature the likes of Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal.