Meet the Highest Paid Female Athletes. Naomi Osaka, Serena Williams rule list

According to Forbes “Among all tennis players, only Roger Federer made more than Osaka from endorsements.”

Ria Das
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Naomi Osaka French Open, Serena Williams supports Naomi Osaka, Naomi Osaka defeats Serena Williams, Highest Paid Female Athletes 2020

The Forbes 2020 list of highest paid female athletes is out and tennis stars mostly dominated with nine players featuring in the top 10. Among those in the list, Japanese player Naomi Osaka outranks global icon Serena Williams who occupies the second place. The only exception in the list full of tennis stars is the US women’s national football team co-captain, Alex Morgan. She ranks 10.


22-year-old Osaka has all the reasons to celebrate as she made $3.4 million in prize money and landed at No. 1 with a whopping $37.4 million worth of sponsors from her 2019 season. Williams landed at No. 2 with $4 million prize money. She made $32 million from endorsement deals. Taking the third position was tennis star Ashleigh Barty, who was paid a total $4.4 million prize money last year. She won the WTA Finals in Shenzhen, China, in November, marking her fourth title for the year, and earned a record for any men’s or women’s tennis event.

“I’m proud to see where women’s tennis is 50 years later and to know that we were instrumental in the success of the game today,” former professional tennis Rosemary Casals told Forbes.

What You Should Know

  • Forbes Highest-Paid Female Athletes 2022 list is here and it features Naomi Osaka at the top
  • Serena Williams ranks second while Ashleigh Barty is third
  • A total of nine tennis players are in the top 10

The Osaka Story

Osaka, who holds dual citizenship, decided to represent Japan ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics, which is now scheduled for 2021. She won the US Open title in 2018 and grabbed the Australian Open trophy in 2019. After the tours, she signed a massive $34m endorsement deals from brands like Nike, Nissin, Procter & Gamble and All Nippon while only $3.4m came from prize money.


According to Forbes among all tennis players, only Roger Federer made more than Osaka from endorsements.

Osaka became Japan’s first Grand Slam singles champion (man or woman) after beating her idol, Serena Williams, in US Open final in 2018. She went toe-to-toe with the 23-time Grand Slam champion and defeated her.

Others In the List

Reigning Wimbledon champion Simona Halep ($10.9m) and US Open winner Bianca Andreescu ($8.9m) are also in the top five followed by two-time Grand Slam winner Garbine Muguruza, world No 5 Elina Svitolina, Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin and three-time major champion Angelique Kerber.

Naomi Osaka Serena Williams women tennis players Forbes Highest Paid Female Athletes 2020