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Record prize money for Australian Open 2015

The Australian Open has increased prize money to an historic high of $40 million.

Men and women singles winners will each get $3.1m while a first round loser will receive $34,500.

Officials say they wanted to ensure the gains made in player compensation were not eroded by the weaker Australian dollar.

"Obviously this is not a decision we have taken without a lot of consideration. But we have an ongoing commitment to the players that we are determined to help improve the pay and conditions of life on the international tennis tour," Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley explained.

"We are honouring that commitment. We as an international tennis community still have some work to do in ensuring that the life of an international professional tennis player is properly compensated. This increase is simply the Australian Open honouring our pledge to the players that we will continue to look at all ways and means possible to get this right. That involves increasing prize money as well as cutting and where possible removing the costs associated with playing our events."

The Australian Open was the first Grand Slam to dramatically increase its prize money in 2013 (from $26m to $30m) following ongoing negotiations with the players and an agreement for a series of annual rises.

Last year the prize pool was lifted to $33m and plans were announced in October for a further increase to $36.3m.

"We have done a lot of work within our business to position ourselves to make this critical investment in the players and for the long term future of the Australian Open," Tennis Australian President Steve Healy explained.

The move means the Australian Open prize money has effectively doubled since it was at $20m in 2007.

Australian Open total prize money timeline
2007                        $20,000,000
2008                        $20,600,000
2009                        $23,140,000
2010                        $24,094,000
2011                        $25,005,635
2012                        $26,000,000
2013                        $30,000,000
2014                        $33,000,000
2015                        $40,000,000
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