Photo : tennisnerd.com
Like many professional athletes, tennis stars have fat bank accounts and luxury properties all over the world, but their affluence makes the members of the WTA and ATP Top 1000 seem like icebergs: mostly underwater. The major headliners are the obviously wealthy, while the struggling majority remain invisible.
Skim through the lists and data compiled by Forbes, and you’ll see that even the most moneyed tennis players in the game earn peanuts compared to their peers in other sports.
Fascinating to say the least.
First things first, there are nearly 2,700 names on the esteemed business publication’s 2023 list of the Richest People in the World!
Before we take a look at sports and tennis in particular, here’s some context in the form of the top 3:
Some of the most recognizable names on the list:
|Donald Trump||1 217th||2,5B|
|Peter Jackson||1 905th||1,5B|
4 OUT OF 2,700
How do your favourite sports stars fare?
Only four made the list of 2,700!
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Michael Jordan comes in first with a fortune of $2B, making him No. 1516 with about 100 other people. Basketball’s other GOAT LeBron James is sitting on an estimated $1B at No. 2545 with about 135 other ballers in and beyond the NBA.
Tiger Woods is No. 2405 with $1.1B.
And there’s the controversial Ion Tiriac. As a member of the ATP from 1968 to 1979, he earned one title and rose as high as World No. 19. After tennis, he hit the big time in the banking and insurance games.
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Looking for Roger Federer? You won’t find him. Despite his brilliant career and business partnerships, he and his $550M are barely halfway there.
But he’s still the richest tennis player if you don’t count Tiriac.
Forbes remains the most credible source for info on the world’s richest people, and the magazine has spun its list into dozens of related webpages like this one:
Forbes Billionaires 2023: The Richest People In The World
Meanwhile, Sportico did its own calculations to compile the Top 50 Highest-Paid Athletes of All Time with earnings adjusted for inflation to put everyone on the same footing across the decades.
Highest-Paid Athletes of All Time List – Sportico.com
Roger Federer is No. 9 with inflation-adjusted earnings of 1.38B. Scroll and you’ll find Rafa at No. 28 with $660M.
Serena Williams is No. 38 ($600M), Andre Agassi is No. 40 ($590M) and Novak Djokovic is No. 41 ($575M).
And our Canadians?
Because they don’t appear in any of the rankings, it’s harder to confirm the numbers for our Canadian players.
That said, calculating their tennis earnings since they turned pro is easy. Beyond that, one can only speculate.
Read also: Felix Keeps it Classy
Despite his two-year absence and thanks to a career that got rolling in 2009, Milos Raonic comes in at No. 1.
In 2015, he signed with New Balance to add to his personal fortune of about $20M.
With his four ATP titles and Top 10 ranking since January 2022 (except for five weeks), Félix Auger-Aliassime is No. 2. He’s followed by his friend Denis Shapovalov with his ATP crown and breakthrough final appearances at leading events.
Next are Grand Slam champion Bianca Andreescu with her three WTA titles and Grand Slam finalist Leylah Fernandez with her two WTA titles.
Read also: Roland-Garros – A Tennis-Lover’s Delight
Here are the total tournament earnings of Canada’s top six professional tennis players on May 22, 2023.
|Name||Earnings||Years on Tour|
|M. Raonic||20 218 982 $||15 ans|
|F. Auger-Aliassime||10 951 538 $||6 ans|
|D. Shapovalov||10 593 755 $||6 ans|
|B. Andreescu||8 538 189 $||7 ans|
|V. Pospisil||7 048 677 $||16 ans|
|E. Bouchard||6 819 275 $||12 ans|
|L. Fernandez||3 610 464 $||4 ans|
|R. Marino||1 514 387 $||11 ans**|
When it comes to sponsorships, it’s safe to assume Félix is outpacing Denis. The Quebecer’s success in the past 18 months prompted brands like Renault and Dior to knock at his door and boost his income by a few million, in addition to his steady stream of invitations to exhibition matches and tournaments owing to his higher ranking.
While they may not be the world’s wealthiest athletes, the top tennis talents probably aren’t worried about making ends meet.
Follow all our Canadians in action here.