Saturday, May 28, 2022

Tennis Stars Dominate Sportswomen Rich List As Naomi Osaka, Serena Williams Make History

Forbes' annual list of the highest earning sportswomen was dominated by tennis players, who made up nine of the top 10

Tennis Stars Dominate Sportswomen Rich List As Naomi Osaka, Serena Williams Make History
Naomi Osaka File Photo

Nine of the top 10 names on Forbes' annual sportswomen rich list are tennis players, with the rankings headed up by Naomi Osaka. (More Tennis News)

It was confirmed in May that Japanese star Osaka had usurped Serena Williams as the world's highest-earning female athlete.

Both Osaka and Serena's earnings, made up of prize money, bonuses, appearance fees and endorsements, beat the previous record held by Maria Sharapova from 2015.

Those two stars of the women's game were the only two females on the overall top 100 sportspeople list, placing at 29th and 33rd respectively.

Osaka collected an astonishing $37.4million, of which the vast majority - $34m - was made up from endorsements. When including male players too, only Roger Federer made more in that category.

Serena's best year to date saw her pick up $36m, while there is a big gap to Ash Barty ($13.1m) in third.

Unlike the top two, the majority of Barty's earnings came from on-court prize money, from which she earned $10.1m, a total boosted by the record $4.4m she took home for winning the lucrative WTA Finals in Shenzhen.

Major winners Simona Halep ($10.9m), Bianca Andreescu ($8.9m) are next, with Garbine Muguruza ($6.6m), Elina Svitolina ($6.4m) also faring well.

Australian Open glory boosted Sofia Kenin into eighth spot with earnings of $5.8m, while Angelique Kerber came in at $5.3m despite a decline in her results.

The only non-tennis player in the top 10 was United States soccer star Alex Morgan. Of the $4.6m she earned, endorsements represented 10 times the value of her playing salary. 

Her team-mate Megan Rapinoe ($4.2m) came in narrowly behind after seeing her profile surge, leading to a host of sponsorships and speaking fees.

Forbes analysed the period between June 1, 2019, and June 1, 2020, meaning the coronavirus pandemic only had a "marginal" impact, with a far greater effect expected to be seen in next year's figures.


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