Wimbledon raises prize money by 11.8pcArchive
LONDON: Wimbledon prize money will total £38 million ($49 million) for this year’s championships, a rise of 11.8 per cent, the All England Club announced on Tuesday.
The men’s and women’s singles champions will receive £2.35 million each — 100,000 more than in 2018.
Continuing a theme of recent years, organisers have again significantly raised the prize money for early-round losers.
Prize money for qualifying and rounds one to three in the singles will rise by 10 per cent with £45,000 now the compensation for a first-round singles exit.
Wimbledon’s total prize money for 2019 surpasses the 62.5 million Australian dollars ($44 million) at this year’s opening Grand Slam in Melbourne but is still lower than the $53 million prize pool at last year’s US Open.
The French Open recently announced an eight percent increase in prize money for next month’s event, taking it to 42.6 million euros ($48 million).
Wimbledon’s prize money has trebled in the last decade.
This year’s Wimbledon Championships will see Court One’s new retractable roof in operation for the first time.
The completion of the three-year project, which includes a new two-level public plaza, will increase seating capacity on the second-biggest show court to 12,345.
Wimbledon greats John McEnroe and Martina Navratilova will be among the players taking part in a test event for the new Court One roof on May 19.
The tournament will not feature ‘shot clock’ this year, although it is likely to be rolled out in 2020, according to club CEO Richard Lewis.
Shot clock, an on-court display counting down the 25-second limit for a server to start the next point, has already been introduced at the US and Australian Opens.
Tiebreaks will be employed at 12-12 in the deciding sets of all matches for the first time this year — meaning all four Grand Slams have different deciding set formats.
This year’s Australian Open introduced a first-to-10 point tiebreak at 6-6 in the decider, the French Open continues to use long deciding sets, and final sets at the US Open are ended with a traditional first-to-seven point tiebreaker at 6-6.
“We feel that 12-12 is a good middle point,” All England Club chairman Philip Brook said. “For us we felt that a tiebreak at 6-6 in the third set was too early. This gives the players a little more time to see if one or the other can win.”
Among a range of sustainability initiatives, Wimbledon will introduce 100 percent recycled and recyclable water bottles this year, while players will no longer receive their re-strung rackets wrapped in plastic, saving about 4,500 plastic bags.
Wimbledon begins on July 1.
Published in Dawn, May 1st, 2019