Growth of 14% in 2016
By NATHAN CLARKE
Professional squash players are earning more money than ever before according to figures released today (Jan 5) by the Professional Squash Association (PSA) which show that the total level of financial compensation in the professional game grew by more than 14 per cent in 2016.
Since the PSA joined forces with the Women’s Squash Association in 2015 to create a unified governing body, the sport has been on an upwards trajectory and today’s figures show that total compensation in the sport increased 13.8 per cent during 2016, representing an increase of $619,500 year-on-year.
As a result, the total prize fund reached $3,756,000 in the Men’s Tour and $1,937,000 in the Women’s Tour during 2016, representing an annual increase of 12.3 per cent and 17 per cent, respectively.
In the Women’s Tour alone the growth seen an increase in earnings of 43.6 per cent amongst the top ten, with the top 100 players earning almost 20 percent (19.3) more than in 2015. Similar increases in the Men’s Tour, with the top ten earning 17.2 per cent more and the top 100 earning 16.1 per cent more, ensured that 2016 was the most lucrative year in the history of professional squash.
“The growth we saw across both the Men’s and Women’s Tours throughout 2016 has been tremendously encouraging and reinforces our belief that the sport is currently moving in the right direction,” said PSA Chief Executive Alex Gough.
“To see such increases in Women’s earning levels in particular is a huge boost to the sport and takes us another step closer to our ultimate ambition of achieving a position of equality and parity in both playing opportunities and prize money across both genders on the PSA World Tour.
“And with many Olympic level athletes having their funding cut in recent months and seeing their sporting futures cast into doubt, to know that the level of financial rewards in squash continues to grow and offer more players than ever before the opportunity to earn a living form the sport is something that we must all be proud of.
“However we cannot rest on our laurels. Our long term ambition is to make professional squash a realistic career choice for as many players as possible and we must continue to improve every aspect of the sport, from our on-court product and broadcast technology through to financial rewards, and we look forward to embarking on the next stage in the journey with our partners throughout 2017 as we continue to drive the sport forward across all areas.”
Picture courtesy of PSA