Tennis - The WTA Finals in Shenzhen in October will reward the champion with the largest ever prize money in tennis history. If a player wins all three of their round-robin matches as well as the semi-final and the final, they would take home $4.725 million as the prize money, which is going to be the largest ever prize money cheque in tennis according to the WTA At present, the largest ever individual prize money is given by the US Open which offers the largest purse for the singles champion at US$3.8 million for men and the women.
WTA chief executive Steve Simon commented, "Of course, a lot of others will follow suit, but as of now, this will be the biggest for men or women. So this is the first time [in tennis] we will be paying the women more than the men.
And there was a true commitment here trying to do something about ‘walking the walk’ when it comes to women’s empowerment. It made a huge impression on us when we saw someone who didn’t just talk the talk.
When we came here, it didn’t feel like China. Honestly, when you look at all of the greenery and openness, it’s still China, but it felt different and a very youthful city too. The demographics here are very young”.
Shenzhen had won the right to hold the tournament beating out cities including Prague, Manchester and Singapore. The tournament is being sponsored by title sponsor Shiseido, who along with the Chinese Tennis Association, Shenzhen City Government and the Gemdale Group, a Shenzhen-based real estate developer, has put up total prize money of over US$14 million.
The tournament is the year-end tournament for the women where the top eight singles players and doubles teams on the WTA Tour qualify for the tournament. The tournament will be hosted at the Shenzhen Bay Sports Centre. This is the first time that Shenzhen is hosting the event.
Singapore had hosted the tournament from 2014 to 2018. Prior to that, the tournament was held in New York, Los Angeles, Madrid and Doha.