Wimbledon increases funds to tackle match-fixing, winners to each get £2m

AFP April 27, 2016 15:58:11 IST
Wimbledon increases funds to tackle match-fixing, winners to each get £2m

Winners of the men's and women's singles titles at this year's Wimbledon will each receive £2 million ($2.9 million), the All England Lawn Tennis Club said Tuesday.

Overall prize money for the tournament has been increased by five percent to £28.1 million for what is now the only one of tennis' four major tournaments played on grass.

First-round losers will now receive £30,000 ($43,000). In the last five years the total prize money has increased from £14.6m in 2011 to £28.1m in 2016, with the singles champions’ prize money increasing to £2.0m from £1.1m.

Last year, reigning Wimbledon singles champions Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams each won £1.88 million.

Wimbledon increases funds to tackle matchfixing winners to each get 2m

Aerial view of Wimbledon. Getty Images

But the US Open continues to be the Grand Slam event with the biggest prize fund. Last year it paid out $42.3 million, with $3.3 million going to each of the singles champions.

This year's Wimbledon will also feature enhanced anti-doping measures following the admission by former champion Maria Sharapova that she had been taking the banned substance, meldonium.

And there will also be "increased investment" in anti-corruption systems after allegations during January's Australian Open that tennis authorities failed to properly investigate possible fixing incidents involving 16 players.

"Our increased investment in promoting integrity in light of the recent focus on these areas underlines our determination for Wimbledon to play its part in safeguarding tennis’s integrity," said AELTC chief executive Richard Lewis.

Wimbledon chairman Philip Brook refused to say whether any ban for Sharapova would affect her membership of the All England Club which she gained as a Wimbledon champion.

"It is hard to say that the reputation of the game has not been hurt," he told the London Evening Standard.

"It would be a great shame because Maria is a popular former champion."

The 130th edition of the Wimbledon Championships will be played at the All England Club in southwest London from June 27-July 10.

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