US Open prize fund tops $50m for first time

The US Open has further strengthened its position as the most lucrative of the four grand slam tennis tournaments after it was announced that the total prize money for this year’s event will stand at $50.4m (€43.7m).

The figure marks the richest purse in tennis history and represents a $4.1m increase on last year’s prize fund of $46.3m. It also marks the first time a tennis tournament has featured a prize fund of more than $50m.

The men’s and women’s singles champions at this year’s US Open will each receive $3.7m, with beaten finalists to pick up $1.825m. Semi-finalists and quarter-finalists will receive $920,000 and $470,000, respectively. Players that exit in the first round will be awarded $50,000.

Winners of the doubles events will receive a record $675,000, with beaten finalists to be awarded $340,000. The United States Tennis Association (USTA) also said the prize fund for its qualifying tournament has significantly risen, by 49.2 per cent to more than $2.9m.

“Five years ago, we committed to the players that total player compensation for players would reach $50m at the US Open, and we are honouring that commitment,” USTA president Katrina Adams said.

The USTA’s announcement comes following Sunday’s conclusion of this year's Wimbledon Championships, which featured a prize fund of £31.6m (€35.7m/$41.2m).

This year’s French Open featured a prize fund of €36m, while the Australian Open increased its total prize money to A$50m (€34.4m/$39.7m) for its 2017 edition, which took place in January.

The 2017 US Open runs from August 28 to September 10. Switzerland’s Stan Wawrinka (pictured) is the defending men’s champion, with Angelique Kerber of Germany having won last year’s women’s event.