Wimbledon Organizers Increase Prize Money, Still Give Men More
April 25 (Bloomberg) -- Wimbledon organizers increased prize money for the 27th straight year while continuing to give the men's champion more than the women's, to remain the only tennis Grand Slam where the discrepancy exists.
Total prize money rose 2.9 percent to 10,378,710 pounds ($18,534,300), organizers said in a statement. Switzerland's Roger Federer will earn 655,000 pounds if he wins a fourth straight crown, while Venus Williams would pocket 625,000 pounds by retaining her title. The 30,000-pound difference was the same last year.
The French Open this month became the third of the four majors to give both singles champions the same amount, though organizers still drew criticism from Larry Scott, the head of the women's professional tour.
Scott said it was ``simply indefensible'' in the 21st century that women's competitors at the season's second Grand Slam should be receiving ``considerably less'' in total prize money than their male counterparts, even though they play a maximum of three sets compared with five for the men.
Last week, six-time Wimbledon winner Billie Jean King said offering equal prize money was a ``no-brainer'' and the right thing to do.
Total prize money for the men's singles at the All England Club in southwest London rose to 3,584,440 pounds, compared with 3,112,140 pounds for the women. Both were 4 percent increases. This year's tournament takes place from June 26-July 9.
This year's French Open that starts May 28 in Paris will offer total prize money of 14,265,800 euros ($17.7 million), an increase of 5.56 percent from 2005.