US Open tennis prize money to reach $50M by 2017

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“Frankly, we’ll take somewhat of a hit,” Smith said, “but it’s the right thing to do for the Open and for the players, so we’re doing it.”

The distribution of the new prize money _ how much will go to the singles champions, for example, or to losers in the early rounds or to doubles teams _ hasn’t been decided. An announcement is expected closer to the start of the U.S. Open, which runs from Aug. 26 to Sept. 9.

The USTA did confirm its commitment to equal paychecks for men and women. But it is not ready to say exactly how prize money will go up between now and 2017, other than that it will increase each year.

“We have a good idea, but we are still working on that,” Smith said. “We’ve shared our thinking (with the ATP), and I think we’re all pretty much on the same page, but we’re working out the details.”

The USTA’s prize money announcement comes before the French Open (which starts May 26) and Wimbledon ( starts June 24) say how much they will offer this year.

Haggerty said the sport’s leading tournaments have not coordinated their efforts to placate players.

“This agreement … really allows us to focus our energies … on growing tennis and participation. This allows us to know generally what the future looks like,” Haggerty said.

“Each of the Grand Slams make their own decisions. … We have not had conversations with the other Grand Slams to tell them what we’re doing,” he added. “They will hear about it when it is announced.”

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Follow Howard Fendrich on Twitter at http://twitter.com/HowardFendrich

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AP freelancer Sandra Harwitt contributed to this report from Key Biscayne, Fla.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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