Prize money for 2014 Tennis US Open
When Serena Williams steps onto the court for her U.S. Open semifinal on Friday, she will be just two wins away from further etching her mark in tennis history. For the 32-year-old, a victory over Ekaterina Makarova backed up by triumph in the final on Sunday would see her join two of the iconic names of tennis, Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova, on 18 Grand Slam singles titles, second only to Steffi Graf’s 22 in the Open era. It would also put her level with Evert for the most U.S. Open titles in the Open era with six.
Those records will surely enter her head when she battles it out on Arthur Ashe Stadium, but Williams could be forgiven for also allowing another historic achievement to come into her thinking. Should Williams lift the trophy, she would also walk home with the biggest paycheck ever for a single tennis tournament of $4 million.
The prize money at tennis grand slams has increased rapidly in recent years, particularly after players demanded a bigger share of the revenue pie. This year the Australian Open singles’ champions were rewarded with 2.65 million Australian dollars ($2.49 million), while their French Open counterparts secured 1.65 million Euros ($2.14 million) and the winners at Wimbledon were rewarded with 1.76 million pounds ($2.87 million). Trumping its counterparts, though, $3 million will be awarded to both men’s and women’s champions at the U.S. Open. And if the winner is Williams, her prize money will be boosted considerably by having won the U.S. Open Series. Designed to add interest to the tournaments that take place in North America in the run up to the year’s final Grand Slam, the Emirates-Airline-sponsored U.S. Open series presents the winner with the chance to increase their paycheck by $1 million should they go onto win the U.S. Open.