Womens Tennis – Why Pay More?

Why do women get the same prize money as men? This is not a ‘sex’ argument, so don’t start shouting at me.  In 2007, Wimbledon started paying women the same prize money as the men (£850,000 for the singles champion this year).  Back then, the argument was based on equality.  For me, the argument should be based on quality.

As with anything in life (pretty much) you pay for what you get. Tennis is the only sport that bucks the trend.  The mens game is quicker, more powerful, more physical and the matches last longer.  It’s the last point – games lasting longer – that forms the basis of my argument.  The mens game can last up to 5 sets (anything between 2 and 5 hours long) where as the womens game only lasts a maximum 3 sets (approx. 1-2 hours) in length.  Remove the fact that the mens game draws a bigger crowd, is quicker, more entertaining, has bigger sponsorships etc and focus on time.  Men should expect to get more prize funds, merely as reward for the hours they put in on the court! I WOULD NOT be happy if I was paid the same as someone else who worked half the hours I did for what is, essentially, the same job.

If anybody wants to argue against my reasoning, bring it on. I think it’s a joke that women get paid the same – ‘time = money’ SHOULD be the determining factor.

Simona Halep - proving why womens tennis can be popular

Simona Halep - proving why womens tennis can be popular


14 responses to “Womens Tennis – Why Pay More?

  1. Oh You know until which point I can be disagree with you…
    Sport has never been remunerated for the hours you spend… Formula 1 very quick and highest salaries…
    And if you want to pay athlete regarding the time spent : how much do you think you should pay a marathon guy or people who play criket???
    You know it’s only based on sponsorship and TV revenues…
    When you say, men are quicker, stronger… True like in every sport, it’s a question of physionomy.
    If if I have a lot of ideas to develop I’ll stop with those ones… Just because I think your post is just made to create arguments…
    Because even if you say, it’s not sexist… It is purely sexist… and of course that create reactions …

  2. I totally disagree with you and found your post quite simplistic and sexist.

    “I think it’s a joke that women get paid the same. Yes, they look great in the little white tennis skirts (…)” Sorry but this kind of comments are obviously sexist and not funny.

    Don’t need to explain much more, Nat has already done it.

  3. No no no. This only applies to tennis. I have never (and never will) adopt this theory to other sports. Tennis is pretty unique in this sense.

    As I said, my argument is not based on the ‘physiology’ – it’s based on the time spent on court. The post clearly states ‘this is my argument’ throughout – so yes, it’s written to provoke debate. It’s not sexist. If it was martians and earthlings it would still be the same principle. Time = money.

    Should the mens game be reduced to 3 sets – for the sake of equality?


  4. Thanks for your comment Rocio. Yes, the last line is said firmly with tongue in cheek. I will remove it, as it probably doesn’t help my argument or support my point.

    This post is not sexist but I knew it would be read in that way. Ok, lets flip this. Why should women be paid the same?


  5. As a former tennis player… Women can easily play 3 sets… So if it suits you… I prefer women and men be equal in that way…
    But I don’t understand why you think tennis is pretty special compare to other sports ??
    Can you develop ? Because I used to play a lot tennis and also practise other sports… And after all it’s competition, it’s sport, it’s hard… Like other sports…

  6. It’s different because men play for longer than women. That’s a fact. Other sports:

    Football – 90 mins – both men and women.
    Rugby – 80 mins – both men and women.
    Cricket – 50 overs (ODI) – both men and women.
    Golf – 18 holes – both men and women (albeit from a different tee)

    Tennis is different. But why? I’m not saying that it’s not competitive. I’m not saying it’s not hard. By why should women be paid the same as men?? You haven’t given me a good enough reason yet.


  7. Ok. For other sports as well, men are quicker than women…
    For example: Women does Heptathlon and Men Decathlon

    If a women run a triathlon, she’ll take more time than a men.
    Also like in the other sports, you can’t reduce the salary at the time spend on a court. Since 5 years, women bring more and more money in term of sponsorship, audience and TV revenues… And that’s those stuff that pay the winner… So you need to take that in consideration.
    If you calculate in proportion with the physiology the effort made by women during 2 sets and men during 3 sets… Same things.
    Even if you don’t want to take “physiology” in consideration you have to.
    For because we are in a society where women and men should be equal regarding the rights we have it’s normal women and men have the same salary.
    But I agree, I’m for 3 sets for women without any problem.

  8. I suppose that for a woman is more or less the same effort to play 3 sets than for a man to play 5 sets… The fact is that obviously men and women do not have the same physical resistence or characteristics but this should not mean than men have to earn more because they are generally stronger, don’t you think?

  9. It’s not a question of strength = money. So I don’t agree that men should earn more if they are stronger, no.

    Yes, I see you are saying that women cannot physically play 5 sets. It’s a tricky one.

    However, if I was a bricklayer and I could work for twice as long as a woman who was also a bricklayer, should she be paid the same amount as me at the end of the day – due to our physiological differences?


  10. They can play 5 sets…. And I would like that like I said before… It’s the WTA and the ATP that choose…

    It depends on so different elements that can’t be separated. I tried to explain it above.
    But let’s play 5 sets together my dear Rosbif if you want to try I’m ready for it

  11. I used to play when I was 16 – and I wasn’t that bad. However, 16 is a long time ago!


  12. Let’s try… so… In 3 sets winning…..

  13. Would you like men playing only 3 sets? If it is a question of “time=money” I consider it is fair but I don’t think you would like that.
    Would you like to see women playing 5 sets? Probably not, because their game would not be as espectacular as men playing 5 (obviously because of the physical difference). My point is that women tennis player train, compete and performance at maximum and so do men, I do not understand why we have to make a difference in the salary.

    “However, if I was a bricklayer and I could work for twice as long as a woman who was also a bricklayer, should she be paid the same amount as me at the end of the day – due to our physiological differences?”

    From a “capitalist” point of view, men and women deserve to earn according to what they are able to produce. However if we fully accept this as THE only rule and do not take in account other factors, we would have also to accept that a company fire me because I am pregnant o contract a man instead of me (as during this period I would not be able to produce as a men would do), for example. This drives to a more complex discussion 🙂

  14. As Jim Courier once said… It’s a simple case of supply and demand.. The demand in tickets, sponsorship, coverage for men’s tennis is far greater than women’s.
    So using simple economic theory’s; the greater the demand, the greater the finance within the sector will be.
    Men’s tennis simply commands more money FACT, therefore quite rightly the mens’s prize should be greater.
    This is no way, detracts from the fact that Women’s tennis is entertaining, infact some might say more so than the men’s, as so often a mens game is won on a serve and volley basis, with very few entertaining rally’s. Whereas the women’s matches are not so much about power, but more so technique to hit a passsing shot or win a point.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s