Gilles Simon, the 13th ranked mens tennis player in the world, said this week at Wimbledon that he believes women tennis players should be paid less than men, because the men’s game is “more attractive.” He added that he thinks equal pay is “something that doesn’t work in sport“:
Simon, the world number 13, had criticised the move towards equality, insisting that the men’s game has more to offer spectators.
“We often speak of equal money, but I think it’s something that doesn’t work in sport,” said Simon.
“Tennis is the only sport today where we have parity even though men’s tennis remains more attractive than women’s at this time.”
Simon is a member of the Association of Tennis Professionals’ player council, which helps advise the tour’s Board of Directors. It was only five years ago that Wimbledon began paying male and female players the same amount, using the fact that men play five sets to womens’ three as justification. Both the U.S. and Australian Opens have been paying equal wages for years.
Even with Wimbeldon’s decision, women tennis players make substantially less than men. As Collin Flake, Mikaela Dufur, and Erin Moore of Brigham Young University found, “Women make $337 less per [tour] point than men, as well as “$27,620 less per singles title won.” Overall, women “are paid $31,337 less per year.”
In a statement, the CEO of the women’s tennis tour, Stacey Allaster, said, “tennis, including the Grand Slams, is aligned with our modern, progressive society when it comes to the principle of equality. I can’t believe in this day and age that anyone can still think otherwise.” Other players have responded similarly. “Over the whole year, we are a long way from winning as much as the men — only in a few tournaments and Grand Slams,” said Marion Bartoli, France’s top women’s player. “We are fully-invested as much as them. The physical demands, training, investment on a personal level are the same as theirs.”
Back in 2007, tennis great John McEnroe said, “I think when you’ve got men and women playing at the same tournament, it is ludicrous to have a difference in pay. It would be setting an example to the rest of society in general to have equal prize money.” Evidently today’s players have yet to catch up with his views.
Stak has also joined the argument in favour. saying on twitter. I agree with Gilles.
Equality has arrived, and everyone is rejoicing at the dawning of a new age of peace, prosperity and mutual support between men's and women's tennis.
“But we play best of 5 sets,” cried the some of the men. “We're more entertaining. They come to see us play.”
I think this is ridiculous and I can't believe this is still happening in this day of age. This constant refusal by some (journos, fans and tennis players) to not actually say what it is they believe and try to hide behind a cloak of "but I don't want to offend anybody," is almost more infuriating than the misogynistic views on women and equal pay in the workplace, any workplace, that are being published. You cannot tell me that Serena Williams or Victoria Azarenka do not train as much as Rafael Nadal or Andy Murray. I really don't understand why women should be paid any differently than the men on the tour. Of course everyone knows that the quality of mens tennis is much better than the womens. Well you would be wrong my friend if you said that. Just lets take Andy's match against Davy for comparison sake, and then compare it to Wozniacki and Paszek. Caro's match was much longer and of a higher quality than Andy's match. The only thing that those 2 matches have in common is the fact that both Wozniacki and Davydenko will take home the same amount of prize money for a 1st round loss. Pro tennis players, men and women, do not just saunter onto a court with their bag flung over their shoulder, looking for a match, they must earn that right to play in the biggest tournaments. The players work incredibly hard to reach this stage. They spend years training and they not only cost them large chunks of their lives and time with their families, but it also costs a great deal of money to employ all of the people to help them fulfill a dream. Men and women alike should accept this – and let the matter drop and let their racquets do the talking. In their different ways, they're usually very good at it. Equal pay is fair and I wouldn't want it any other way.
Thanks to ScoobsChris and Kelly (@mikomonstrJail) for their views on this. I added some of my views as well