>> Sunday, August 21, 2011
A total $23.7 million will be awarded to players attending the US Open 2011, the final grand slam in the tennis calendar. The record amount will be distributed to the seven tournaments being held in Flushing Meadows, New York from August 29 to September 11. $16.9 million will be distributed equally between the men's and women's singles championships, with the men's and women's singles champion each going home with $1.8 million. A total of $3.6 million is the purse for the men's and women's doubles championships, with the men's and women's doubles champion team earning $420,000. Half a million dollars is the allocation for the mixed doubles championships with the champion team getting $150,000. A total of $1 million is allocated for the 224 participants in the qualifying tournament for both the men's and women's singles championships who fail to reach the main draw. See table at the end of this post for a detailed breakdown of the US Open 2011 prize money.
In addition to the base purse of $23.7 million, the top three men’s and top three women’s finishers in the Olympus US Open Series may earn up to an additional $2.6 million in bonus prize money at the US Open, providing a potential total payout of $26.3 million. If the winners of the Olympus US Open Series go on to win the US Open title, they will each receive additional $1 million in bonus prize money. This bonus prize money has resulted in the largest single paychecks in tennis history. Roger Federer of Switzerland earned $2.4 million in 2007 for winning both the US Open title and the Olympus US Open Series in 2007. On the women's side, Kim Clijsters of Belgium won $2.2 million in 2005 for achieving the same feat.
This year, Mardy Fish of the USA is the top finisher in the 2011 Olympus US Open series out-performing world #1 Novak Djokovic who finished second. Fish, the world #7 however, is not considered the favorite to win this year's US Open title though he would be among the dark horse contenders. Djokovic, the current Australian Open and Wimbledon champion is considered the US Open top contender, with French Open champion and world #2 Rafael Nadal, world #3 Roger Federer and world #4 Andy Murray expected to challenge Djokovic for the title.
Serena Williams of the USA is leading the women's standings with 170 points. With only one more tournament remaining, only Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland has a chance of eclipsing the younger Williams. Radwanska needs to reach at least the final of the New Haven tournament to overtake Williams in the standings. Williams is being touted as the favorite to win this year's US Open after winning 2 tournaments this summer. Former world #1 Maria Sharapova, Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova, French Open champion Na Li, and world #1 Caroline Wozniacki are the other favorites to challenge Williams for the title. Two-time US Open champion, Kim Clijsters, has withdrawn from the tournament on Friday citing a stomach muscle injury.
Source for the US Open 2011 prize money: www.usopen.org.