U.S. Open prize money upped 11.7 percent for 2014

Wed Jul 9, 2014 1:30pm EDT

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(Reuters) - The prize money pool for this year's U.S. Open has been increased by 11.7 percent to a record $38.3 million, the United States Tennis Association (USTA) announced on Wednesday.

The men's and women's singles champions will earn $3 million, a record payout at the year's final grand slam, while winners of each round of the singles competition will be awarded a double-digit percentage increase over last year.

"Last year to recognize the importance of the players and the key role they have in building our sport, the USTA shared our vision to reach $50 million in prize money at the U.S. Open by 2017," USTA chairman Dave Haggerty said in a statement.

"This year's prize money increase continues the commitment to make the U.S. Open one of the most lucrative purses in all of sports."

The total purse for the U.S. Open's singles, doubles and mixed doubles competitions - which exceeds those at two of the other three grand slam tournaments - has been increased by 12.5 percent over last year.

This year, Wimbledon had a total prize pool of 25 million pounds ($41.98 million) while the Australian Open had an overall purse of $33 million and the French Open paid out a total of $34.54 million.

In the last three years, prize money for the main draw at the U.S. Open has been increased by 64.6 percent.

This year's qualifying tournament will offer more than $1.5 million in prize money for the first time, a rise of 11 percent over 2013.

The 2014 U.S. Open will be held from Aug. 25-Sept. 8 in New York.

($1 = 0.5956 British Pounds)

(Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes in Los Angeles; Editing by Frank Pingue)

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