The United States Golf Association (USGA) has established of a new championship, the U.S. Senior Women’s Open Championship, which will debut in 2018.

The addition of the U.S. Senior Women’s Open increases the number of national championships conducted annually by the USGA to 14.

“We have studied and discussed the need for this championship for many years and now we can celebrate its introduction,” said USGA President Thomas J. O’Toole Jr. “The USGA has been leading and supporting women’s golf since 1895 and it has never been stronger. We hope that current and younger players will be inspired to see national championship competition long into their playing careers.”

The U.S. Senior Women’s Open is the third new championship added to the USGA schedule in the past two years. The U.S. Amateur Four-Ball and U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball were announced in February 2013, with the inaugural championships to be contested in 2015.

“We feel strongly that factors such as the international strength of the LPGA and the increasing number of age-eligible quality competitors from around the world, as well as the growth of women’s golf, are key to reaching this historic announcement. The number of entries in our women’s championships continues to grow,” said USGA Executive Director Mike Davis.

Eligibility for the U.S. Senior Women’s Open championship will be limited to professional and amateur female players, age 50 and older.

The championship format will mirror that of the U.S. Open: 72 holes of stroke play on four consecutive days with a cut after 36 holes. To mirror the other Open championships conducted by the USGA, the U.S. Senior Women’s Open will be a walking-only competition.

Field size and composition, playoff and other competitive format details of the inaugural U.S. Senior Women’s Open will be announced by the USGA at a later date.