The top 9 all-time WTA career prize money earners: Will Iga Swiatek challenge Serena Williams’ No 1 spot?

Shahida Jacobs
Serena Williams
Serena Williams with her trophy after she won the Wimbledon final

Serena Williams is well clear at the front in terms of all-time career-prize money earners on the WTA Tour, but reigning world No 1 Iga Swiatek is continuing her rapid progress up the list.

22-time Grand Slam winner Williams has a mammoth advantage over her WTA rivals in terms of career earnings from her playing days as she earned more than double what her closest challenger, sister Venus, earned.

Six active players feature in the top 9 in terms of all-time career income from tennis and there is no doubt that Swiatek will feature closer to the frontrunners – or even end up top – if she continues to dominate women’s tennis for a few more years.

Top 9 all-time WTA career-prize money earners:

9. Iga Swiatek – $31,443,563

Four-time Grand Slam winner Iga Swiatek moved past compatriot Agnieszka Radwanska ($27,683,807) on the list on the back of her big paydays at the 2024 Madrid Open and Italian Open.

The Pole has already earned more than $6m in 2024 as she collected $2.5m with her French Open title run while more than $2m came from her three WTA 1000 titles in Qatar, Madrid and Rome.

Swiatek’s best seasons in terms of prize money came in 2022 when she earned $9,875,525 and she followed it up with $9,857,686 in 2023.

READ MORE: 2024 WTA prize money leaders: Iga Swiatek and Aryna Sabalenka out in front, Coco Gauff 6th

8. Angelique Kerber – $32,446,894

Former world No 1 Angelique Kerber is a three-time Grand Slam winner with two of those titles coming during the 2016 season so unsurprisingly that was also her best year for earnings.

The German collected $10,136,615 in 2016 and she is one of only three players to pass the $10m mark during a single season. That $10,136,615 is also fourth in the all-time list for the best single season for earnings on the WTA Tour.

7. Caroline Wozniacki – $35,926,538

Caroline Wozniacki could still move up a couple of places on the list after she came out of retirement in 2023, but she will most likely need to win several tournaments.

The Dane passed the $6m mark milestone for a single season only once and that came in 2018 – the year she won the Australian Open – as she collected $6,657,719. She also earned more than $4m in a single season three times during her career.

6. Petra Kvitova – $37,252,032

Two-time Wimbledon winner Petra Kvitova is the only player in the top 9 who hasn’t been world No 1 with her best ranking No 2, which she first achieved in 2011.

The 2011 season also proved to be her best year for earnings as she collected $5,145,943 on the back of winning Wimbledon, the WTA Finals and four other WTA titles.

5. Victoria Azarenka – $37,728,981

Two-time Australian Open winner earned a cool $7,923,920 in 2012, which is the ninth best in terms of single-season earnings, and the following year she earned $6,497,165.

Azarenka won six titles in 2012, including one of her Australian Open trophies.

4. Maria Sharapova – $38,777,962

Many predicted Maria Sharapova would challenge Serena Williams in terms of titles and prize money earnings early on in the Russian’s career, but she came up well short in the end as the American won 73 titles compared to Sharapova’s 39.

Interestingly, Sharapova also doesn’t feature in the top 15 list for best earnings in a single season.

The five-time Grand Slam winner’s best year was 2012 when she earned $6,508,296 when she won the French Open, and finished runner-up at the Australian Open and WTA Finals.

3. Simona Halep – $40,227,773

Former world No 1 Simona Halep features twice in the top 15 list for best seasons as in 2018 she earned $7,409,564 and the following year she made $6,962,442.

Unsurprisingly, those were the years Halep won her Grand Slams (French Open in 2018 and Wimbledon in 2019). The Wimbledon title was Halep’s only trophy in 2019.

2. Venus Williams – $42,648,697

Venus Williams occupies the second spot behind her sister Serena Williams and she will likely remain there for a few more years as Halep is in the final few years of her career.

And while Serena appears several times on the list of best-ever seasons, Venus doesn’t feature in the top 15 as her best season was worth “only” $5,468,741 in 2017 – a year in which she didn’t win any titles as she finished runner-up at the Australian Open, Wimbledon and WTA Finals.

To compare just how much women’s prize money has increased in recent years, in 2008 she won Wimbledon and earned $3,747,565 while she won both Wimbledon and the US Open in 2000 and 2001, but earned $2,074,150 and $2,662,610 respectively.

1. Serena Williams – $94,816,730

All-time great Serena Williams still holds the record for the best-ever season for earnings as that came in 2012 when she banked $12,385,572 after winning Wimbledon, the US Open and WTA Finals.

Her other best seasons were in 2015 ($10,582,642), 2014 ($9,317,298), 2016 ($7,675,030) and 2012 ($7,045,975).

It is staggering that she has double the career earnings of second-placed Venus and her net worth is estimated to be $290 million.

READ MORE: The 8 players with the most WTA 1000 titles: Steffi Graf No 2, Iga Swiatek already joint sixth