It is hard not to be jealous of people who get to play sports on a professional level. Not only do they do what they love most, i.e. they’ve got their dream job, but they also get paid a lot to do it. It makes you wonder though, do they ever have time to actually spend their salary? One of the biggest paying sports around is tennis. Thanks to the popularity of contests like Wimbledon, the US Open and the Australian Open, tennis players are among the most well paid athletes in the world. However, it’s not just the money they get from winning these competitions; the exposure the athletes get from these tournaments is huge which means that they also lure in brands who want the tennis players to be the faces for their brands. Put this all together and you can earn big dollars if you can be one of the best in the business. We have put together a list of the top ten highest earners in the tennis world. The figures alone just might inspire you to get off the couch and take up the sport for yourself.
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10. Kei Nishikori
As of the November 3, 2014 Japanese tennis player Kei Nishikori is number five in the world rankings. Working his way up to this spot Nishikori has also managed to earn himself some serious cash. With seven career titles to his name, it is estimated that he has earned around $7 million in prize money. $2 million of that was won this year alone. This year Nishikori has collected $9 million from campaigns, commercials and endorsements from brands such as Wilson, Adidas and Delta Airlines.
9. Caroline Wozniacki
Currently ranked number eight in the world by the Women’s Tennis Association, Danish player Caroline Wozniacki has managed to rack in some serious cash during her career. In just this most recent season Wozniacki has managed to earn herself $10.8 million and has apparently collected around $19 million in prize money. Wozniacki currently has 22 Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) career titles, four International Tennis Federation (ITF) titles and two US Open Championships under her belt. It is easy to see how she has managed to get those millions. Her recent earnings are a combination of $1.3 million in prize money and another $9.5 million from endorsements. Her current endorsements include Adidas, Proactiv, Rolex and Sony Ericsson.
8. Li Na
According to the Women’s Tennis Association Chinese player Li Na is currently sitting at number nine in the world. The star player has so far this year brought in $23.6 million. $5.6 million of that has come from prize money with the other $18 million stemming from endorsements. During her career Na has won two Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) titles and 16 International Tennis Federation (ITF) titles. She also won the Australian Open in 2014 and the French Open in 2011. This string of successes has seen Na collectively bring in $16 million in prize money throughout her career.
7. Victoria Azarenka
Hailing from Belarus in Eastern Europe, Victoria Azarenka has managed to make quite a mark in the tennis world. Currently sitting at number 32 in the world according to the Women’s Tennis Association Azarenka has reportedly earned around $24 million in prize money in her career so far. This successful career has seen her receive 17 Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) titles and one International Tennis Federation (ITF) title. In just this year, Azarenka earned $11.1 million. $3.6 million of that has come from prize money, while the other $7.5 million stems from endorsements from brands like Nike, Wilson and Red Bull.
6. Maria Sharapova
This outstanding Russian player is currently ranked number two in the world by the Women’s Tennis Association. Maria Sharapova has earned this title thanks to her 33 Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) titles and her four International Tennis Federation (ITF) titles. There is also the fact she’s won the French Open twice and took out the Wimbledon title in 2004. This success has seen her win around $31 million in prize money in her career so far. In just this recent tennis season Sharapova has pulled in $22 million from endorsements. She is currently sponsored by brands like Nike, Samsung and Motorola. She has also earned $2.4 million in prize money in just this year alone.
5. Andy Murray
Sitting at number six in the world according to the Association of Tennis Professionals Andy Murray has reportedly managed to earn $33 million in prize money in his career so far. The British player has 31 career titles to his name including the US Open title which he received in 2012. Murray also won Wimbledon in 2013. So far just this year Murray has pulled in $4.1 million in prize money and $15 million from endorsements. His current sponsors include Adidas, Royal Bank of Scotland and Jaguar.
4. Roger Federer
It is easy to see why Swiss player Roger Federer has managed to make a fortune out of playing tennis; Federer holds the record for the most Grand Slam titles as he currently holds 17. He also managed to spend 302 weeks as world number one. It is estimated that the 34 year old has won himself around $84 million in prize money. Adding to that, Federer has also appeared in commercials and campaigns for brands like Rolex, Nike and Credit Suisse. It is said that in just the most recent season of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) these endorsements have earned Federer around $52 million.
3. Serena Williams
Serena Williams is one name that even those who do not follow tennis probably know. The American is currently sitting as the number one female player in the world according to the Women’s Tennis Association. Her successful career has seen her draw in around $63 million so far in prize money. The legendary player has taken the US Open six times, has won Wimbledon five times and has another 64 Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) career titles to her name. This year alone Williams has earned around $11 million in prize money and $11 million from endorsements.
2. Novak Djokovic
The world’s number one male player according to the Association of Tennis Professionals Novak Djokovic has done well for himself in his career so far. He has so far earned a collective total of around $67 million in prize money. In this season alone he has also won $12.1 million in prize money so far and received $21 million from endorsements. The Serbian player is currently sponsored by companies including Mercedes-Benz, FitLine and Piguet. With 47 career titles under his belt Djokovic has also won the Australian Open four times and taken the Wimbledon title twice.
1. Rafafel Nadal
This Spanish player has apparently earned around $70 million in prize money in his career so far. Currently sitting at number three in the world according to the Association of Tennis Professionals Rafafel Nadal has been doing well for himself. He has the fifth highest number of career titles with 64 under his belt so far. Adding to that he has also won the French Open nine times and taken the Wimbledon title twice. It is easy to see where that $70 million is coming from. In fact, just this year alone he scored himself $30 million from endorsements and $14.5 million from prize money.
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These tennis players have earned their money with a lot of hard work and a lot of sacrifices. They’ve probably never taken a day off and they never have time to spend with family and friends. It just makes you wonder, if we were promised as much money would we be motivated enough to get on our feet?