World first as US Squash leads the way in prize money parity

In a world first for squash, US Squash has announced that the prize purse for the 2013 Delaware Investments U.S. Open will provide equal prize money for both the women’s and men’s championships.

Leading the way in the industry, and ahead of many other professional sports yet to achieve parity for both genders, the prize money for the women will be raised to $115, 000 to make it equal to the men’s fund.

Prize Parity Nicol David picThe women’s draw will also be increased to 32 players from a previous 16 player draw, now in line with the men’s draw, providing greater opportunity for female professional players to compete in the World Series event.

“It is a top priority for us to promote opportunities for girls and women to play squash. Offering equal prize money is one way we are able to help more female squash players compete at the highest level and to their full potential.” says Kevin Klipstein, CEO of US Squash.

“In the US we have the same number of girls playing as boys, a nearly equal number of women and men competing in college, and an incredible, dynamic, entertaining World Champion and recent U.S. Open Champion in Nicol David. The women’s tour is equally as significant and competitive as the men’s, and the opportunities for both genders should be equivalent.”

This year’s prize purse will total $230, 000, paying $115, 000 to each division, making it among the largest prize money events worldwide.

Last year the U.S. Open offered the highest prize money in the history of the event and attracted all of the world’s top ten men and women players.  The event continues to grow in stature and the competition intensified with this latest raise, becoming one of the most prominent tournaments in the world, and one of the most popular amongst the world’s best players.

In professional sports, tennis has become the role model for prize money parity since the U.S. Open in tennis did so in the early 1970’s.

Prize Parity pic 2“Any time you can achieve equality in any field of endeavor – be it in sports or in life – everyone wins, ” said sports icon and social justice pioneer Billie Jean King. “This announcement is so much more about the message than the money and I am thrilled another U.S. championship event has stepped up and done the right thing.”

The 2013 Delaware Investments U.S. Open will be held at Drexel University in Philadelphia from October 9-18.

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  1. Shikha Mudgil February 10, 2013 at 9:27 pm

    Awesome & progressive!!! Go US Squash, for leading the world to catch up with the times!

  2. Bill Adamson February 16, 2013 at 8:38 pm

    Do the women command the same ticket prices on their separate tour as the men do on theirs? Do people pay the same to see Nicol David v. Laura Massaro as they do to see Ramy Ashour v. Nick Matthew? Do as many people attend? If they do, OK to equal prize money when men and women compete side-by-side at the same venue. If not, this is just a genuflection to political correctness. Unfortunately many women will consider equal prize money their “right” (whether they could earn it in the open market or not) and many men will be too afraid of being accused of being “sexist” to oppose it. Such are the times in which we live where everything “progressive” is considered “awesome.” When the sexes competed at separate venues at their respective 2012 world championships, the men had about twice the prize money to divide as did the women. Could “market value” conceivably have had anything to do with this? Perhaps the US Open should try a test case. Hold the men’s and women’s tournaments at the same venue but a week apart and see who generates how much revenue. Any bets? Tennis as a “role model?” The differential in entertainment value between the current men and women tennis pros is a chasm. Equal pay in that sport in particular is a joke.

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