Money

The Wimbledon women's champion earned $980 in 1968—here's how much she'll win this year

Venus Williams at Wimbledon this year
Ashley Western | Getty Images
Venus Williams at Wimbledon this year

For whoever wins the Wimbledon women's championship on Saturday, the payout will be much, much higher than in 1968, the start of tennis' professional era. And, even better, it will be the same amount paid to the men's winner for the 10th straight year after decades of pay inequality on tennis' biggest stage.

In the championship match, American Venus Williams will face Spain's Garbine Muguruza. It'll be Williams' chance at claiming the Grand Slam tournament title for the sixth time (and her eighth major tournament overall).

The winner will collect a hefty paycheck, to the tune of approximately £2.2 million (or about $2.8 million). The runner-up, meanwhile, is set to earn £1,100,000 (or about $1.4 million).

Both players have amassed some big winnings in their careers, although Williams, 37, has played much longer. Her career earnings? A reported $36 million, according to Women's Tennis Association (WTA) website.

Muguruza, meanwhile, has raked in about $11 million, according to the WTA, which was helped by her French Open title in 2016.

Billie Jean King stretches to reach the ball in the 1968 Wimbledon final.
PA Images Archive | Getty Images
Billie Jean King stretches to reach the ball in the 1968 Wimbledon final.

In 1968, winner Billie Jean King, a pioneer for equal rights and pay for women in sports and a 2009 Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient, took home just £750 or $980. That same year, the men's champion earned £2000 or $2,621.

Following is a list of how much the women's champions earned, approximately every five years, starting in 1968.

Of particular note is 2007, the first time both men and women earned equal pay for claiming the tournament's title. For instance, in 2006, the men's champion took home £655,000 or $858,590. The woman who won that year? £625,000 or $819,265, or a difference of about $40,000.

Winnings are in both British pounds and U.S. dollars. Exact amounts may have varied depending on exchange rates at the time. The figures are based on Wimbledon's full pay breakdown, which can be found here.

1968: £750 or $980

1973: £3,000 or $3,922

1978: £17,100 or $22,357

1983: £60,000 or $78,446

1988: £148,500 or $194,154

1993: £275,000 or $359,544

1998: £391,500 or $511,860

2003: £535,000 or $699,477

2007: £700,000 or $915,204

2008: £750,000 or $980,576

2013: £1,600,000 or $2,091,896

2017: £2,200,000 or $2,876,357

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