Sharapova Disheartened by Female Tennis Prize Money Disparity, Fans Remain Apathetic

Sharapova pointed out the problems that create gender inequality in tennis.

Maria Sharapova is one of the most influential female tennis players in tennis history thanks to her professional success and commercial appeal. However, not every female tennis player has a complete career like “Russian Doll”.

Attending the Bloomberg Live event not long ago, Sharapova bluntly pointed out the inequality between men and women in tennis. According to “Russian Doll”, tennis fans rarely pay attention to female tennis players, except in some major tournaments like the Grand Slam.

"Sharapova

Sharapova is upset about the inequality between men and women in tennis

She even took as an example the sad case of the 2023 US Open women’s singles champion, Coco Gauff: “You saw Coco Gauff win her first major title at the US Open, but 3 weeks later, how many people did knew she was competing in a tournament in Beijing? She stopped at the semi-finals, but I’m sure 99% of fans who watched the US Open don’t know which tournament she will attend next.

Sharapova also mentioned the difference in prize money between men and women, and predicted that this situation could not be completely resolved: “Last week, there was a men’s tournament taking place in Shanghai with the prize The prize for the winner is 1.2 million USD. At the same time, there was a women’s tournament in China with the winner receiving $120,000 in prize money.

At Grand Slams, we can celebrate when the prize money for men and women is equal, but those are big events. The rest of the season, the other 8 or 9 months, the difference is very significant.

Besides, Sharapova denied the possibility of large organizations such as ATP (Professional Tennis Association), WTA (Women’s Tennis Association), ITF (International Tennis Federation) merging in the near future. According to the 36-year-old former tennis player, the biggest problem that makes this idea difficult to come true lies in arranging the competition schedule:

“There are many organizations like ATP, WTA, ITF with ownership of different tournaments. How to arrange the calendar when there are so many events in the year? How to make tournaments accessible , interesting and exciting? This process will take time and won’t happen anytime soon but I hope it will!”.

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