At the 2009 Australian Open men’s and women’s singles winners will receive an 18 percent increase from last year. Bringing the total prize money to $15.6 million.
It was announced on Wednesday that the singles winners will receive an additional $1.15 million each based on the current exchange rates.
The Australian Open is due to begin on the January 19th and finish on the February 1st. It will feature the prospect of Roger Federer winning his 14th major title to equal Pete Sampras’ record.
Federer lost in the semifinals at Melbourne Park to Novak Djokovic this year, then fell to Rafael Nadal in the final at the French Open and Wimbledon. Federer beat Andy Murray in the U.S. Open final for his 13th major.
Djokovic and Maria Sharapova are the defending champions. The tournament is set for its first night women’s final on Saturday, Jan. 30, following a move it made in 2005 to a night men’s singles championship on the final Sunday.
Tennis Australia chief executive Steve Wood said the tournament hopes to improve on this year’s attendance figure of 605,000, which bettered the 2007 total of 550,000.
“We think we’re in great shape,” he said.