Behind the blinding lights and the razzmatazz that ornaments it, tennis, as a sport, is extremely demanding. It is one of the most physically challenging sports that require the highest levels of fitness on the tennis court. And since tennis is played throughout the year in modern times, there is little room for respite. However, while it draws a lot from the players associated with the sport, tennis has its own way of paying them back. Statistically speaking, tennis is one of the highest-paying sports today. It would not be an overstatement to say that some of the richest athletes in 2023 are, in fact, tennis players. Or even former tennis players, for that matter. But more on that in a bit.
Owing to its ever-growing popularity, tennis is one of those sports that has an immense fan following in almost every corner of the world. Broadcasters provide extensive coverage of all the major events and the media is constantly on their toes about any updates in the world of tennis. The players, by virtue of the media, have become household names with multinational conglomerates running behind them for endorsements. The attention that these players receive is justified as well― after toiling day and night throughout the year, they are allowed to bathe in the pool of stardom.
For many players associated with the sport, tennis is akin to a life insurance policy― they and their close ones continue to enjoy the dividends from their days on the tennis court even years after their retirement. Stars such as Roger Federer, Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova and Andre Agassi continue to enjoy the privileges of posterity which most athletes can only dream of. Keeping this in mind, it seems unfair to exclude retired players from a list of the wealthiest tennis players in the world.
Tennis, as a sport, is just and fair. It ensures that parity is maintained between both male and female players when it comes to their earnings from the sport. In fact, some female tennis players are not just the wealthiest personalities in the world of tennis but also rank among the wealthiest people from all walks of life.
As such, we bring to you a curated list of the top richest female tennis players in the world. The ranking is based on each of these players’ impressive net worths.
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A look at the richest female tennis players in the world
Net worth in 2023: USD 6.7 billion
Jessica Pegula has widely been characterised by the tennis fraternity as the “epitome of a late bloomer.” While it might have taken her around a decade to break into the top 100 of the WTA singles rankings, once she did, there was no looking back for her. In the past few years, Pegula has taken giant strides in the world of professional tennis in both the singles and the doubles categories. As of September 2023, Jessica Pegula is ranked third in the WTA singles rankings and sixth in the WTA doubles rankings.
However, it is her mind-boggling net worth that has made Jessica Pegula the talk of the town. According to various reports, Jessica Pegula has a net worth of around USD 6.7 billion. While she earns around USD 10 million per year, according to a report by Forbes, and has a rich endorsement portfolio with brands like Adidas and Yonex on it, most of her wealth comes from her billionaire parents, Terry and Kim Pegula. For the uninitiated, the couple is the owner of the National Hockey League team Buffalo Sabres and the National Football League outfit Buffalo Bills.
Net worth in 2022: USD 290 million
In a career spanning over 27 years, Serena Williams has seen it all― she has fallen into the deepest of trenches and conquered the highest of peaks in the world of tennis. The former American ace tennis player ruled over women’s tennis in both the singles and the doubles disciplines. Williams retired from professional tennis in September 2022 as the most successful female tennis player and one of the most successful tennis players of all time, regardless of gender. A winner of 23 Grand Slam titles and the only player to have won a career Golden Slam (winning all four Grand Slam events in a single year) in both singles and doubles categories, Serena Williams is now a mother to two daughters.
The term ‘self-made woman’ can be aptly attributed to Serena Williams. According to Forbes, the American has a net worth of around USD 290 million in 2023 and was also featured in Forbes’ list of The World’s Highest-Paid Athletes in 2023 with a yearly income of USD 45.3 million. That she continues to enjoy a salary in the millions even a year after retiring from professional tennis speaks volumes about the impact Serena Williams has had on the sport.
Net worth in 2022: USD 180 million
Having reached the summit of the WTA singles rankings at the age of 18, Maria Sharapova went on to become one of the greatest female tennis players in the history of the sport. She also remains the only Russian to have won a career Grand Slam. Sharapova won a total of five Grand Slam titles― two French Open titles and one each at the Australian Open, the Wimbledon Open and the US Open.
Even though she bid farewell to professional tennis in 2020, Maria Sharapova remains one of the wealthiest female tennis players in 2023. According to reports, her net worth stands at USD 180 million, courtesy of her winnings from professional tennis and her earnings from endorsement deals with brands such as Nike and Evian, among others.
Net worth in 2023: USD 95 million
The world of tennis hardly needs any introduction to Venus Williams who is widely regarded as one of the sport’s all-time greats. While her partnership with her younger sister Serena Williams in women’s doubles tennis remains the stuff of legends, Venus Williams has been a successful singles player as well. The former world number one has won seven Grand Slam singles titles, which includes five crowns at the Wimbledon Open and two at the US Open.
Besides being a legend of the sport, Venus Williams ranks among the richest female tennis players in 2023 with an estimated net worth of USD 95 million, according to a report by Celebrity Net Worth. The 43-year-old veteran tennis player also enjoys several endorsement deals with companies such as Tide, Wilson, Kraft, Electronic Arts and Ralph Lauren, among other brands. Along with her sister Serena, Venus Williams also has a minority stake in the National Football League Team Miami Dolphins.
Net worth in 2023: USD 65 million
Despite never reaching the summit of the WTA rankings, Li Na remains one of the most popular tennis stars of the 21st century. For context, the former Chinese tennis player reached a career-best rank of number two in 2014. Li Na is also the first tennis player hailing from Asia to reach a Grand Slam final (she achieved this feat at the 2011 Australian Open). At the French Open the same year, she took a step further to win the title, becoming the first Asian player to win a Grand Slam crown. Li Na won her second Grand Slam title at the 2014 Australian Open.
The Chinese player was included in Time magazine’s list of 100 Most Influential People in the World in 2013. While she retired from professional tennis in September 2014, Li Na continues to be one of the wealthiest female tennis players in the world. According to a report by CAknowledge, Li Na, in 2023, enjoys a net worth of USD 65 million. She was also inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2019.
Net worth in 2023: USD 60 million
One of the best female tennis players of all time, Anna Kournikova enjoyed greater success in the women’s doubles discipline than in the singles category. She is best known for her partnership with Martina Hingis. The duo won the Australian Open women’s doubles event in 1999 and 2002, and the WTA Championships in 1999 and 2000. It’s no surprise then that her exploits in the doubles discipline took Kournikova to the summit of the WTA doubles rankings. Kournikova and Hingis even referred to themselves as the “Spice Girls of Tennis.” However, she also attained a career-best ranking of eighth place on the WTA singles rankings. Unfortunately, the Russian had her career cut short by severe back and spinal problems, including a herniated disk, which forced her to retire from professional tennis in 2003.
Even two decades after her retirement, Anna Kournikova remains one of the richest female tennis players in the world. According to reports, her net worth stands at an estimated USD 60 million in 2023. The 42-year-old former tennis player is also a popular face on American television.
Net worth in 2023: USD 25 million
A winner of 20 career singles WTA Tour titles, Agnieszka Radwanska frequently made headlines in morning dailies during her time on the tennis court. The former tennis superstar, despite not winning a single Grand Slam title, remains a renowned female tennis personality to date. Radwanska became the first Polish player in the Open Era to reach a Grand Slam final when she achieved the feat at the 2012 Wimbledon Open. In addition, she is also the first Polish tennis player to win the WTA Finals (when she won the title in 2015), and was part of the Polish team that won the Hopman Cup in 2015, a first for the nation.
Agnieszka Radwanska’s injury-plagued career came to an abrupt end in 2018 when the tennis star was forced to announce her retirement at the young age of 29. However, she is still among the richest female tennis players in 2023, with an approximate net worth of USD 25 million.
Billie Jean King
Net worth in 2023: USD 20 million
Regarded as one of the greatest tennis players of all time, Billie Jean King has won 39 Grand Slam titles across the women’s singles (12 titles), doubles (16 titles) and mixed doubles (11 titles) disciplines. Besides her exploits on the tennis court, King is also famously known for establishing the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) and the Women’s Sports Foundation. She has achieved numerous prestigious accolades for her contributions to the sport. The list includes the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award and the French Legion of Honour, among several others.
The yesteryear American tennis star ranks among the richest female tennis players even over 30 years after her retirement. According to reports, Billie Jean King, in 2023, has a net worth of around USD 20 million. She has been a great ambassador of the sport and was also inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1987.
Fun fact: The 2017 film Battle of the Sexes is about Billie Jean King’s game-changing win against male tennis player Bobby Riggs.
Net worth in 2023: USD 16 million
Tennis fans from the 1970s are familiar with the name Chris Evert, but for the unversed, she was a former world number one-ranked tennis player. During her impressive career, Evert won 18 Grand Slam titles, including a record seven French Open titles and a joint-record six US Open crowns (she shares that record with Serena Williams). The American former tennis player also holds the record for the most singles finals appearances in Grand Slams (she’s made 34 appearances). Her epic rivalry with Martina Navratilova is fabled in the history of the sport as the duo dominated the world of women’s tennis in the 1970s and the 1980s.
At the age of 68 years, Chris Evert is among the richest female tennis players in the world. According to reports, the yesteryear tennis player enjoys a net worth of over USD 16 million. She was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1995 for her exemplary career.
Net worth in 2023: USD 16 million
Summing the list of the richest female tennis players in 2023 is Ana Ivanovic, a former tennis star hailing from Serbia. She has won 15 singles titles on the WTA Tour, including a solitary Grand Slam win at the 2008 French Open. The Serbian has won over USD 15.5 million in prize money, which is the 25th highest in the all-time rankings. However, Ivanovic failed to sustain her glittering form, and in 2015, announced her retirement from professional tennis.
Despite a premature retirement, Ana Ivanovic has amassed an impressive wealth from her time as a professional tennis player. Various reports suggest that Ivanovic enjoys a net worth of around USD 16 million in 2023. She is also a UNICEF National Ambassador for Serbia, joining the ranks of Aleksander Dordevic, Jelena Jankovic, Emir Kusturica and Novak Djokovic.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
– Who is the richest female tennis player in 2023?
Jessica Pegula is the richest female tennis player in 2023 with an enormous net worth of USD 6.7 billion.
– How much is Serena Williams’ salary?
Serena Williams, in 2023, earns around USD 45.3 million annually.
(Main Image Credits: Courtesy Instagram/@Serena Williams and Instagram/@Jessie Pegula)
(Featured Image Credits: Courtesy Instagram/@Venus Williams)