Denis Shapovalov: Tennis gender gap ‘doesn’t make sense at all’

Canadian tennis star Denis Shapovalov has supported the campaign for equal pay for men and women in professional tennis.  (Reuters)
Canadian tennis star Denis Shapovalov has supported the campaign for equal pay for men and women in professional tennis. (Reuters)

Canadian tennis star Denis Shapovalov is tired of the pay gap between men and women in professional tennis.

In an article published in Tribune of playersShapovalov passionately called for gender pay parity between the ATP and WTA.

“I’m not sure everyone realizes how bad it is for tennis. Tomorrow is International Women’s Day and I want to talk about the gender gap,” he wrote. “His So unfair. It doesn’t make sense at all.

“And this is important because the costs in tennis are crazy: you travel all year round, you stay in hotels, you pay your coaching staff. breakeven. For these players, prize money is not about getting a good amount of extra money. This is survival.”

The 23-year-old admits that his girlfriend, Swedish tennis player Mirjam Bjorklund, opened his eyes to financial inequality after qualifying for the WTA 250 tournament.

I said to Miriam, “Oh, great! You will receive at least $7,000 just to qualify for the main draw.”

She just looked at me like I was new to tennis. I will never forget it.

She’s like, “Denis… I think it’s about a thousand dollars.”

I’m like, “What are you talking about? How is this possible??

Shapovalov worries that insufficient compensation for tennis players could seriously hurt the future of the sport as fewer and fewer aspiring players are willing to sacrifice time and effort to barely make a living.

“When it comes to prize money, anything short of total equality isn’t just unfair – it also blocks participation. If female players are treated unfairly, some of the lower level players may find that they cannot afford to continue. Potential stars will just walk away,” he wrote.

“And then women’s tennis will really become less ‘popular’. It will be shown less on television. This will have a domino effect. And the saddest thing is that it comes to children. I was inspired by Roger, but if women’s tennis gets less attention, a little girl in front of the TV may not think that this can be a reality for her, she will never see her idol and leave, Look at her. I want to do it.”

Shapovalov likened the situation to the Canadian women’s soccer team’s labor dispute with Canada Soccer, as the organization failed to deliver on its promises of equal compensation.

“Look what’s happening with the Canadian women’s soccer team. They won a gold medal at the last Olympics, and their funding was reduced a few months before the World Championships, ”Shapovalov wrote. “This is one of the best football teams in the world and yet they have to fight for equal support? This is madness”.

While many applauded Shapovalov for coming out strongly in support of equal pay, some pointed out that the star’s current coach, former player Peter Polanski, has publicly opposed the idea in the past.

Shapovalov is currently ranked 30th in the world, owning 173-141 and earning over $10 million in prize money over his six-year career.


Back to top button

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker