Each year The ATP World Tour sees the winners from tennis’ major tournaments battling it out to be crowned the ultimate champion- earning the sport’s most prestigious title and a large cash prize. With a prize fund of £2,227,500 going to the winner of this year’s finals, we’ve investigated exactly how much have the world’s best players have gathered in prize money over the years. Here are the top ten ATP earners in tennis, based on ATP prize money won in their career to date:
1. Roger Federer – ATP earnings to date: $57,439,704
Currently ranking 3rd in the world, but ranked number one for 285 weeks of his career; the 29 year old Swiss is currently the ATP World Tour’s top earner and has been firmly making his mark in tennis since 1998 when he became the number one junior player in the world. Since then he has won 63 singles titles, been the first player to win 15 Grand Slam singles titles, finished as ATP World Tour Champion four times and reached all four Grand Slam titles in 2009; thus completing his Career Grand Slam. Roger Federer is already qualified for the ATP World Tour Finals this year.
2. Pete Sampras – Total ATP earnings: $43,280,489
A former world number one tennis player for a record-breaking 286 weeks; US-born but Greek-blooded Pete Sampras had racked up 64 singles titles at the close of an impressive 15-year tennis career in 2002. Known for his smooth style, he became the youngest men’s champion at the age of 19 when he won the US Open in 1990, went on to win 14 of the 18 Grand Slam singles finals he played and won five ATP World Tour Finals. All this means he is frequently regarded as one of greatest players of all time.
3. Rafael Nadal – ATP earnings to date: $33,755,902
Currently the world number one, the 24-year old Spanish Rafael was only 15 when he won his first ATP match in 2002 and has since gone on to win 42 singles titles. Famously coached by his uncle as a left-handed player, he has used this advantage to win nine Grand Slam singles titles, a record 18 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournaments and has completed the Career Golden Slam by winning all four Grand Slams as well as an Olympic Gold Medal. Currently qualified for the 2010 ATP World Tour Finals, he is set to work his way up in the top 10 ATP earner’s list.
4. Andre Agassi – Total ATP earnings: $31,152,975
A retired and former world number one tennis player for 101 weeks of his career, this charismatic American appeared on the scene as a 16-year old in 1986 and won his first Grand Slam, Wimbledon, in 1992. He was the only player in history to win a Career Super Slam by winning all four Grand Slams, an Olympic Singles Gold Medal and the ATP World Tour Finals. In total, Andre has also won eight Grand Slam singles tournaments and taken home 60 singles titles before injuries forced him to retire in 2006 after an impressive 17 year career.
5. Boris Becker – Total ATP earnings: $25,080,956
With a number one ranking for 12 weeks of his 16-year career, the ginger German famously became the youngest player ever to win Wimbledon at the age of 17 in 1985, entering the tournament as an unseeded player. He went on to win 49 singles titles in total, of which six Grand Slams and three ATP World Tour Finals before retiring from professional tennis in 1999. His impressive career meant that in 2003 he was inducted in the International Tennis Hall of Fame.
6. Yevgeny Kafelnikov – Total ATP earnings: $23,883,797
After making his debut in 1992, Yevgeny was the first ever Russian to become the world’s number one in tennis or any other sport, spending only six weeks of his career at the top in 1999. In total he won 26 singles titles including two Grand Slams and an Olympic Gold Medal, as well as four Grand Slam doubles titles. Early on in his career, he was named as the ATP most improved player of the year in 1994 when he climbed 93 places in one year. He retired from professional tennis in 2003 after finishing with his lowest ATP ranking since 1993.
7. Ivan Lendl – Total ATP earnings: $21,262,417
One of the most dominant players of the 80’s, the Czechoslovakia-born, US citizen started his professional career in 1978 and remained a top competitor into the early 90’s before retiring in 1994 due to a bad back. During his 17-year pro career he was ranked as the world number one for 270 weeks and captured no less than 94 singles titles, of which eight were Grand Slams and five were ATP Tour Finals wins. He also took home six doubles titles. When he retired in 1994, he was the highest prize money earner of his time.
8. Stefan Edberg – Total ATP earnings: $20,630,941
Another ex-world number one, Swedish Stefan famously battled it out with Boris Becker during the 80’s and 90’s and is known for his serve-and-volley style. After an impressive junior start, he came to the scene in 1983 and in his career spent a total of 72 weeks at the number one ranking. He also won a total of 42 singles titles, of which six were Grand Slams and one was an ATP World Tour Finals win. His doubles career is impressive too, winning 18 doubles pro titles of which three were Grand Slams. He retired from professional tennis in 1996.
9. Goran Ivanisevic – Total ATP earnings: $19,876,579
Best known for being the only person to win the men’s singles Wimbledon title as a wildcard entry in 2001, this Croatian tennis player has a career high ranking of world number two. He first came on the scene in 1988 and made his first real impact when beating Boris Becker in 1990 during the first round of the French Open men’s singles. In total he won 22 singles titles of which 1 was a Grand Slam title, before retiring from the game in 2004.
10. Michael Chang – Total ATP earnings: $19,145,632
After coming on the scene in 1988; US player Michael Chang famously became the youngest ever male player to win a Grand Slam singles title (his only one) at the French Open in 1989, aged 17. His junior career had already seen him set numerous ‘youngest-ever ‘records, setting the scene for 34 singles titles in his adult career. Although he only ever reached a number two world ranking, he remained in the top ten ATP world rankings for several years of his career and after retiring in 2003, was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2008.
The ATP World Tour Finals will take place this year from 21st -28th November in London’s O2 Arena, making it easy for Brits to see Raphael Nadal, Roger Federer and six other current tennis pros battling it out in the year’s most exciting tennis tournament. ATP Tour Finals tickets are sure to sell out so if you want to catch some of the action visit GetMeIn.com.