Roger Federer highest-paid athlete in the world in Forbes list for 2020, Virat Kohli at 66th

FP Sports

Roger Federer has topped the Forbes list for highest-paid athletes for the first time with earnings of $106.3 million before tax. The Swiss, holder of 20 Grand Slam titles, is the first tennis player to take the No 1 rank since the list debuted in 1990.

Federer's haul includes $6.3 million in prize money and $100 million from endorsements and appearance fees, said Forbes, taking him from fifth spot last year and improving on the second place in 2013.

The 38-year-old Federer joins golfer Tiger Woods as the only two active athletes to hit $100 million in a single year from sponsorships alone.

Cristiano Ronaldo came in second, narrowly ahead of Lionel Messi, with both seeing a drop in earnings due to salary reductions called on by the pandemic. Ronaldo earned $105 million while Messi tallied $104 million.

As was already announced, 2018 US Open champion Naomi Osaka entered the list and did so by going past 23-time Grand Slam winner Serena Williams to become highest paid female athlete ever. Osaka, featuring 29th in the list, earned $37.4 million ahead of Serena, 33rd in the list with $36 million. Osaka and Serena's presence is the first time more than one woman has made the ranks since 2016, when Williams appeared with Maria Sharapova.

India cricket captain Virat Kohli is 66th in the standings with a combined $26 million in earnings which can be split into $24 million for endorsements and $2 million in salary/winnings. Kohli is the only Indian and cricketer in the list.

Athletes from 21 countries and 10 sports make the final cut this year. The 100 highest-paid athletes earned a collective $3.6 billion this year, a 9 percent drop from 2019 and the first decline since 2016.

Top-10 highest-paid athletes in the world:

1. Roger Federer ($106.3 million - $100 million in endorsements and $6.3 million in salary/winnings)

2. Cristiano Ronaldo ($105 million - $45 million in endorsements and $60 million in salary/winnings)

3. Lionel Messi ($104 million - $32 million in endorsements and $72 million in salary/winnings)

4. Neymar ($95.5 million - $25 million in endorsements and $70.5 million in salary/winnings)

5. LeBron James ($88.2 million - $60 million in endorsements and $28.2 million in salary/winnings)

6. Steph Curry ($74.4 million - $44 million in endorsements and $30.4 million in salary/winnings)

7. Kevin Durant ($63.9 million - $35 million in endorsements and $28.9 million in salary/winnings)

8. Tiger Woods ($62.3 million - $60 million in endorsements and $2.3 million in salary/winnings)

9. Kirk Cousins ($60.5 million - $2.5 million in endorsements and $58 million in salary/winnings)

10. Carson Wentz ($59.1 million - $4 million in endorsements and $55.1 million in salary/winnings)

Also See: Naomi Osaka surpasses Serena Williams to usurp throne as world's highest-earning female athlete

Virat Kohli credits former India strength and conditioning coach Shankar Basu for inspiring fitness transformation

The Heist: First-ever Roger Federer vs Rafael Nadal final and other greatest escapes in tennis

Read more on Sports by Firstpost.