The world is watching with bated breath as England and New Zealand sweat it out to clinch the coveted ICC World Cup 2019. Winning such events often boosts the reputation of a country. But money too, plays a major motivating factor for some players.
Cricket enjoys a massive fan following across countries and invites a record number of viewership especially when it comes to the ICC World Cup.
The cricketing event that happens every four years has the maximum prize money on line. This year too, the prize money is ₹69.6 crore – the winners will take home $4 million (₹27.4 crore) and the runners-up $2 million (₹13.7 crore).
For the uninitiated, the cash award may appear a huge amount, but in reality it is not when compared to other sports.
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Take for example the other two events lined up today – a Super Sunday- the Wimbledon men’s final and 2019 British Grand Prix.
The Wimbledon has a total prize money of $49 million dollars (₹4.9 crore), with the winner of the men’s or women’s singles taking home a cool $3.14 million (₹21.5 crore). The All England Club in a first has brought about parity in price money for both men and women.
The whooping purse for the winner pales in comparison to the winners of the FIFA World Cup. The football event – which surpasses in viewership even compared to the Olympics – has a price money of ₹2,786 crore.
Captain of the Indian cricket team Virat Kohli, the only Indian sportsperson in the Forbes 100 richest athletes stands last on list with earnings of $27 million (₹187 crore). The top spot has been bagged by iconic footballer, Lionel Messi with $127 million (₹870 crore).
The huge gap between Kohli and Messi is a testament to the fact that cricketers aren’t as rich as people believe them to be.
When The Federal spoke to Lakshmipathy Balaji, the current bowling coach of the Chennai Super Kings, about the disparity in earning of cricketers and other players, he said it is not justified to compare the two sports.
“Cricket has, for the longest time, been played by Commonwealth countries, and even though it has been around for a long time it has only now started to become widespread in countries like China and USA,” Balaji said.
He said cricket needs infrastructure and other technical aspects like umpires and deciding authorities, whereas football and tennis can be played easily anywhere. The accessibility is what makes them more famous and the involvement of many countries is what makes the sports lucrative.
While football and tennis have reached all the corners of the world, F1 is still a rich man’s sport. The huge involvement of money and brands like Ferrari, Mercedes, and Red Bull (Honda Power engines) also ensure good returns.
An F1 commercial rights holder expects to share a prize pot of $1,004 m (₹6,800 crore) between the teams in today’s British Grand Prix.