There is no Wimbledon at the moment for the first time since World War II due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Yet despite no tournament, the more than 600 players who would have competed in the main draw or qualifying will receive prize money, the All England Club announced Friday.
The venue has reportedly had pandemic insurance for the last 17 years and got a large pay-out when it canceled the event. After consulting with its insurance company, the club will give $12.5 million in prize money to 620 players based on their world rankings.
Wimbledon prize money awarded to competitors
The 256 players who would have competed in the main draw singles event will receive $31,000 each, the venue said. The 224 players who would have competed in the qualifying event will get $15,600 each.
Richard Lewis, the club’s chief executive, said in a statement:
“Immediately following the cancellation of The Championships, we turned our attention to how we could assist those who help make Wimbledon happen. We know these months of uncertainty have been very worrying for these groups, including the players, many of whom have faced financial difficulty during this period and who would have quite rightly anticipated the opportunity to earn prize money at Wimbledon based on their world ranking.”
The 120 players who would have been in the doubles competition will each receive $7,800. The 16 players in the wheelchair event will get $7,500 each and the four who were in the quad wheelchair events will get $6,200.
At the 2019 event, Wimbledon paid out a total of $49.4 million in prize money. Winners of both the men’s and women’s singles draws get approximately $3 million each. Every player in the main draw earned at least $57,136.
The 2020 tournament was scheduled to begin June 29. The tournament reportedly got $141 million from its insurance policy to cover losses.
All England Club helps COVID-19 causes
The club has donated to charities working to assist people during response and recovery amid the crisis. It also donated all of the strawberries, towels and balls intended for the 2020 competition as well as distributed hot meals to communities in need.
The club announced it had also worked with the governing body for tennis in Britain to provide a payment to licensed officials who would have worked at Wimbledon this year.
Wimbledon changes seeding for men
The All England Club said it is already working toward the 2021 event and what that might look like given the pandemic.
Its first decision, it said, is that the seeding formula used since 2002 “has served its time” and will be changed. Beginning next summer, the seeding in the men’s singles draw will be based only on ranking, it said. The women’s singles draw will remain based on the same computer seeding formula.
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