Captain Virat Kohli is the only Indian who made it among the world’s 100 highest paid athletes in the latest Forbes list. The list, which is topped by Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo, has Serena Williams as the only female athlete.
28-year-old Kohli has been ranked 89th with a total pay of USD 22 million that includes USD 3 million from salary and winnings and another USD 19 million from endorsements.
The list that features athletes from 21 countries and 11 sports had Williams as the lone female athlete at No. 51 with $27 million. Maria Sharapova, who normally makes the list, did not appear in the list this year due to reductions in her endorsement contracts after a 15-month doping ban.
Ronaldo topped the list after earning $93 million over the past 12 months to retain the crown of the world’s highest-paid athlete for the second straight year. The Portugal captain was named FIFA’s best player in the world for the fourth time, scored his 600th career goal and secured a contract extension with Real that will pay more than $50 million annually for the next four years.
He also signed a deal with Nike worth upward of $1 billion. His value went up even more after his side secured the Champions League title, La Liga title, not to forget that he led Portugal to Euro 2016 glory.
He is followed by Cleveland Cavaliers player Lebron James at No. 2 with $86.2 million earnings. He led his club to their first NBA title.
The top five highest-paid athletes after Ronaldo and James are Lionel Messi ($80 million), Roger Federer ($64 million) and Kevin Durant ($60.6 million). The top five is the same as last year with only James and Messi swapping places.