This year’s Australian Open is the richest in the tournament’s history, after organisers increased its prize money pool by 10 per cent to AUS$55m (£31m).
That means the winners of this weekend’s men’s and women’s singles final will each receive a record prize of AUS$4m (£2.26m) — a AUS$300,000 (£169,000) increase on the reward paid to 2017 victors Roger Federer and Venus Williams.
Losing finalists can take solace in a runner’s-up prize of AUS$2m (£1.13m) while even those who crashed out at the semi-final stage – such as British rising star Kyle Edmund – have added banked AUS$880,000 (£497,000) prize.
In fact, this year’s defeated finalist will earn just as much, in local currency, as the outright winner of the Grand Slam less than a decade ago. In 2009 Rafael Nadal won exactly AUS$2m for overcoming Federer in an epic final and winning the tournament for the first and only time to date.
For those who crashed out in the first round, the consolation was AUS$60,000 (£34,000) — not too bad for an afternoon’s work.
This year’s Australian Open singles prize is the second largest in the history of tennis, bettered only by the $3.7m in greenback won by last year’s US Open champions Nadal and Sloane Stephens.
Meanwhile Federer won around $2.8m for his record-breaking Wimbledon victory in 2017 — as did women’s singles champion Garbine Muguruza — while Nadal and Jelena Ostapenko received around $2.4m for winning the French Open.