Virat Kohli stood as one of the world’s highest paid athletes in the Forbes’ list. He is one of the five players whom the BCCI handed the A+ contract this year.
He is the only Indian to be included in this list with the earnings of 24 million USD. He stood in the 83rd position in the list of 100 players. The surprising thing in this list is it included only male players leaving no room for women. Kohli is not only the popular player in India but also one of the richest players.
The list is topped by the 41-yr-old player, Mayweather with earnings around 285 million USD.
Kohli is one of the popular players around the world with twitter followers more than 25 million. He will retain more than 1 million USD a year, by his annual BCCI contract.
Forbes said, “Yet like the Indian cricket mega-stars who have come before him, Kohli’s big payday comes off the pitch” as he is bonded with top brands like Puma, Pepsi, Audi, and Oakley.
There are no female players in this list because of the retirement of tennis star Li Na, and Maria Sharapova is still serving 15-month ban period. Serena Williams and Venus Williams, who were the regular names along with the former ones in the Forbes’ list lost their places this year. Williams is the only women to secure a position in this list in 2017 but her prize money fell considerably from USD 8 million to USD 62,000 after giving birth to her daughter Alexis.
This year, the list included 42 NBA players breaking last year’s record of 32 NBA players. Mayweather led the list for the seventh time with pay of $275 million a day in August for a boxing match. Le Bron James stood sixth in the list with$85.5 million earnings including endorsements.
Lionel Messi stood second on the list followed by Christiano Ronaldo. His annual income accounts up to USD 111 million including endorsements for brands like Adidas and Gatorade. His annual salary accounts for $85 million. Christiano Ronaldo’s earnings were USD 108 million preceded by Mayweather and Messi in the top 100 list.
Brazillian player Neymar stood in the fifth position with USD 90 million. He is the third football player to stand in the top five positions in the list.
Other top players in the list are LeBron James(6) the basketball player, tennis stars Roger Federer(7), Rafael Nadal(20), golfers Tiger Woods(16), and Rory McIlroy(26). The cut-off amount for this list was $1.5 million to 22.9 million USD. There was 29 percent hike in the salaries of the players this year.
There was a rise in prize money but endorsement earnings fell considerably. The list included athletes from 22 countries dominated by 66 Americans. The highest paid players were basketball, baseball, and football players and the top 100 list included 72 players of these above three sports.