The continued increase in prize money on the World Snooker Tour is underlined by the fact that 34 players earned over £100,000 in 2017/18, compared to just 22 the previous season.
Total prize money earned by tour players during the 2017/18 season was £13.31 million, an increase of 31% on the previous season’s £10.14 million.
Williams and Higgins earned over £1.4m between them last season
World Champion Mark Williams topped the money list with £898,776*, his highest ever career total. This was the second highest amount ever earned by one player in a season, after the £933,428 banked by Mark Selby during the 2016/17 campaign.
View the full prize money list
Ronnie O’Sullivan earned £888,000 in 2017/18 which meant that for the first time ever, two players collected more than £800,000 in a single season. O’Sullivan’s tally was also his highest ever.
Next on the list were John Higgins with £612,372 and Mark Selby with £565,085, which meant that four players earned more than £500,000, compared to just two the previous season. Other similar comparisons include:
Nine players earned over £400,000 (five in 2016/17)
13 players earned over £300,000 (eight in 2016/17)
34 players earned over £100,000 (22 in 2016/17)
61 players earned over £50,000 (46 in 2016/17)
The player in 64th place on the list earned £46,100, compared to £37,450 in 2016/17 and £26,875 in 2015/16.
World Snooker Chairman Barry Hearn said: “These figures highlight not only the extent to which our overall prize money is growing, but the fact that the earnings are spread further down the rankings than they have been in the past.
“The players at the very top of the list are earning unprecedented sums, with Mark Williams’ total boosted by the record £425,000 top prize at the World Championship. Next year that figure will rise to £500,000. It won’t be long before a player earns £1 million in a single season for the first time.
“And the fact that the number of players earning over £100,000 has grown by over 50 per cent in a single year emphasises the size of the rewards available to any player climbing to the top end of the rankings. Last season we also removed entry fees, giving younger players a better chance to build financial security for themselves while climbing the rankings.
“Snooker continues to grow rapidly as a global sport and we are committed to exploiting all opportunities to increase prize money and earning opportunities for the players. Our target of £20 million overall prize money is achievable in the foreseeable future, which is remarkable when we consider that less than a decade ago it dropped as low as £3.5 million. What a fantastic time to be a snooker player!”
* Figures earned by players include money earned in all sanctioned events including high break and 147 prizes, plus appearance fees for the Hong Kong Masters.