Like 2013, this year I will do a countdown of the top money list leaders from both the WTA and LPGA. Last year I did the top 30, but this year I will do the top 25. Note that as of this post, the retired Li Na has been removed from the WTA website money list rankings, but I will include her here. Thus, some WTA players will be off by one position on my list compared to the WTA website list. Also, Hyo Joo Kim is not on my LPGA list due to not being a member this year. I’m certain she will be on the list in the future. For the WTA, singles, doubles and mixed are combined for this top 25. Number 21 on this money list for each tour are Venus Williams (WTA) and Jenny Shin (LPGA).
VENUS WILLIAMS (United States)
2014 Official WTA Prize Money: $1,242,361
Best Results: Singles WINNER Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships; RUNNER-UP ASB Classic, Rogers Cup, Coupe Banque Nationale; Doubles (w/Serena Williams) QF US Open
2014 might not have matched the outstanding seasons during the prime of Venus Williams, the ones upon which she built her Hall of Fame credentials. However, it was her best season since 2010. After reaching, and winning, only one final in singles from 2011 to 2013, Venus matched her 2010 total of 4 finals reached. She won in Dubai while finishing runner-up in Auckland, Montreal and Quebec. In Montreal, she beat her sister, world #1 Serena Williams, before falling to Agnieszka Radwanska in the final. Speaking of Serena, the sisters only played three tournaments in doubles this season. They didn’t win any doubles titles together, losing twice to the great doubles team of Elena Vesnina and Ekaterina Makarova, but they did manage to reach the quarterfinals of the US Open. The third loss was when Serena fell ill on court at Wimbledon. Speaking of Wimbledon, maybe Venus’ finest moment was her valiant three set classic battle, albeit in a losing effort, against eventual champion, Petra Kvitova. Managing her Sjogren’s Syndrome, not to mention turning 34 in 2014, it’s probably a good idea to simply focus her energy on singles unless she wanted to exclusively play doubles. There’s no need for that as she proved that on her good days she can still play elite level tennis with the best players in the world.
JENNY SHIN (South Korea)
2014 Official LPGA Prize Money: $720,046
Best Results: T10 US Women’s Open, 3rd Swinging Skirts, 6th Airbus LPGA Classic, T6, ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open, T7 Lorena Ochoa Invitational, T9 Blue Bay LPGA
Jenny Shin had by far her finest season on tour. 28 events with only 1 missed cut. Her 70.991 scoring average, the best of her young career, was good enough to rank 16th among her peers. Jenny recorded 6 top 10s, including at the biggest event in women’s golf, the US Women’s Open. She showed her consistency with 20 top 30 finishes. The next step for Shin is to get into the winner’s circle. If she has another year like 2014 where she’s consistently making cuts and scoring well that next step might not be too far off. What isn’t clear is whether 2014 saw her take a lasting step to being a top player or was just a one season anomaly. Obviously, I hope she’s here among the best players for the long haul. She’s not at all a big hitter, but she’s super accurate off the tee and a decent overall putter, although she could work on her GIR stats. If she can seize a few more scoring opportunities, maybe 2015 will be her breakthrough in terms of securing a tournament victory.
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