Early casualties at the Australian Open will still leave with a smile, with organisers planning to bump up their prize money.
Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley confirmed on Thursday there would be an increase in 2017 tournament prize money from the $44 million on offer this year.
The exact details will be announced this month but players, particularly those who made an early exit, were in line for a boost, Tiley said.
“You can expect an increase and to what extent we will be able to tell you in the next week or two,” Tiley said.
“Generally it’s lagged behind for the players ranked 100 to 200 so we’ve stepped up by offering more prizemoney in qualifying and the first two rounds and that’s the direction we will continue to go because we believe there needs to be a larger group of players professionally who make good money.”
Last year players winning their singles qualifying round matches earnt almost double what they were paid in 2015, claiming almost $6,000.
Players winning their main draw first round matches received $34,500 while the men’s and women’s champions pocketed $3.85 million.