With her annual income crossing Rs 120 crore, Russian tennis ace tops Forbes' rich list for 10th straight year
Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova has topped Forbes magazine's list of highest paid female athletes for the 10th consecutive year, having earned a whopping $24.4 million (more than Rs 120 crore approximately) in endorsements and prize money between June 2013 and June 2014.
Maria Sharapova. Pic/Getty Images
Sharapova, who is featured in the August issue of the magazine's US edition, has six more fellow tennis players for company in the rich list.
Li Na is No 2
A close second is China's Li Na, who won the Australian Open resulting in a huge bonus from her through endorsement deals, taking her earnings to $23.6 million.
Sharapova's long-time rival American Serena Williams occupies the third position with an annual income of $22 million.
South Korean figure skater Kim Yuna, who won silver at the Sochi Olympics in February, is fourth with $16.3 million.
At No 5 is American NASCAR car racing driver Danica Patrick with annual earnings of $15 million.
In sixth spot is Belarus'
tennis ace Victoria Azarenka with earnings of $11.1 million. No 7 is Denmark's former World No 1 Caroline Wozniacki with an annual package of $10.8 million.
Eighth on the list is World No 5 Agnieszka Radwanska, who earns $6.8 annually.
Serbian tennis champ Ana Ivanovic ($6.4 million) and American professional golfer Paula Creamer ($5.5 million) take up the 9th and 10th spots respectively in the rich list.
Sharapova, who suffered an injury-hit season, earned just $2.4 million in tournament earnings over the 12-month period, according to the magazine. However, she more than made up the numbers with a series of lucrative endorsements adding up to $22 million, claimed Forbes.
The magazine also said that Sharapova's $1 million annual deal with cosmetics giant Avon helped offset some of the loss in earnings when sports major Nike, in November, decided to sell shoemaker Cole Haan, from which Sharapova had received significant royalty.
10 highest paid female athletes...
1. Maria Sharapova $24.4 million
2. Li Na $23.6 million
3. Serena Williams $22 million
4. Kim Yuna $16.3 million
5. Danica Patrick $15 million
6. Victoria Azarenka $11.1 million
7. Caroline Wozniacki $10.1 million
8. Agnieszka Radwanska $6.8 million
9. Ana Ivanovic $6.4 million
10. Paula Creamer $5.5 million