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World's Highest Paid Women Athletes

The highest earning athletes are men, but many women sports stars also earn decent money. Here are some lists over time of the top earning women in sports.

Details of sportswomen earnings can be derived from Forbes Magazine list of the World's Best Paid Athletes published since 1990 and from Sports Illustrated Magazine's annual Fortunate 50 and the International 20 lists which have been published since 2004. Data from each of these publications are listed below. The earnings figures are just estimates, and you can see that Forbes and Sports Illustrated earning numbers do not always correspond.

Top Paid Women (According to Forbes)

high paid galSee the lists of the top paid female athletes in these years: 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014.

The take home message here is that if you are female and want to make some money playing sport, take up tennis. Click on the year number for more high earners from that year. Data from a few of the years is missing.

Year Name   Sport earnings ($ million)
2014 Maria Sharapova Russia Tennis 24.4
2013 Maria Sharapova Russia Tennis 29
2012 Maria Sharapova Russia Tennis 27.1
2011 Maria Sharapova Russia Tennis 25
2010 Maria Sharapova Russia Tennis 24.5
2009 Maria Sharapova Russia Tennis 22
2008 Maria Sharapova Russia Tennis 26
2007 Maria Sharapova Russia Tennis 23
2006 Maria Sharapova Russia Tennis 19
2005 Maria Sharapova Russia Tennis 18.2
2004 Serena Williams USA Tennis 9.5 (10?)
2003 Venus Williams USA Tennis 14
2002 Venus Williams USA Tennis 11
2000 Martina Hingis Switzerland Tennis 11
1999 Martina Hingis Switzerland Tennis 12
1998 Martina Hingis Switzerland Tennis 10
1997 ?
1996 ?
1995 ?
1994 Steffi Graf Germany Tennis 8
1993 Steffi Graf Germany Tennis 9.8
1992 Monica Seles USA Tennis 8.5
1991 Monica Seles USA Tennis 7.6
1990 Steffi Graf Germany Tennis 6.1

Top Paid Women (According to Sports Ilustrated)

See the lists of the top paid female athletes in these years: 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014.

Year Name Sport earnings ($ million)
2014 Maria Sharapova Tennis $23.5
2013 Maria Sharapova Tennis $25.5
2012 Maria Sharapova Tennis $26.5
2011 ?
2010 ?
2009 ?
2008 ?
2007 Maria Sharapova Tennis $23.8
2006 Maria Sharapova Tennis $25.4
2005 Maria Sharapova Tennis $23
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