Top 10 Richest Table Tennis Players
Table tennis may not be as popular in the United States as it is in East Asia and Europe, but that does not mean table tennis athletes cannot achieve great wealth or fame. Talented players abroad have built financial success by winning championships, earning sponsorship deals, and continuing their work with their national teams after retiring from the sport. Below, we take a look at the top ten richest table tennis players in the world.
Who Are the Richest Table Tennis Players in the World?
- Ma Long
- Wang Liqin
- Chen Jing
- Jean-Michel Saive
- Jan-Ove Waldner
- Zhang Jike
- Timo Boll
- Liu Guoliang
- Fan Zhendong
- Wang Hao
1. Ma Long
Ma Long is the world’s richest table tennis player, with an estimated net worth of $20 million. Nicknamed “the Dictator” and “the Dragon,” he is regarded as one of the greatest table tennis players of all time. He has been ranked world number one for 64 months in total, longer than any other male player. He is also a three-time World Champion, five-time Olympic gold medalist, and nine-time World Cup winner, making him the fifth-ever table tennis player to win a “Grand Slam.” It is estimated that he earns $16,000 per match, and in 2013 alone, he made almost $250,000 by winning all the tournaments he entered.
2. Wang Liqin
With an estimated net worth of $20 million, Wang Liqin ties for first with Ma Long to be the world’s richest table tennis player. Before retiring in 2013, he won titles in all four events of the World Championships, two gold and two bronze Olympic medals, and the team World Cup in 2011. He is also a four-time gold medalist at the Asian Games and has been Asian champion eight times. Due to his success, his league salary during his career is estimated to have been around $750,000.
3. Chen Jing
Retired player Chen Jing is the third-richest table tennis player in the world, with an estimated net worth of $18 million. In the 1988 Seoul Olympics, she played for the People’s Republic of China and won a silver medal for doubles and a gold medal for singles. She later competed for Chinese Taipei, the name of Taiwan’s team, in the 1996 and 2000 Olympics, bringing home a silver and a bronze medal in singles. After retiring from table tennis, she went on to become a sports psychologist and worked for the Chinese National Table Tennis Team. Her wealth is owed to her successful table tennis career and her continued work in the sport.
4. Jean-Michel Saive
Renowned Belgian player Jean-Michel Saive has an estimated net worth of $15 million, making him the fourth-richest table tennis player in the world. During his 35-year career, he competed in seven consecutive Summer Olympic games, starting in 1988, when table tennis first became an Olympic sport in Seoul, and ending in 2012 in London. Jean-Michel won a silver medal at the World Cup, two silver medals at the World Championships, and one gold medal plus four silver at the European Championships. He is also a 25-time Belgian Champion in singles and a 25-time Belgian Super Division winner. His long career is the source of his impressive net worth.
5. Jan-Ove Waldner
Nicknamed “the Mozart of table tennis” because of his ability to play different compositions on the table, Jan-Ove Waldner is the fifth-richest table tennis player, with a net worth of $10 million. At the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, he won gold in the men’s singles event, making him the first and, to date, the only player from a country other than China, Japan, or South Korea to win an Olympic title in table tennis. Waldner is also among the five table tennis players who have achieved a “Grand Slam.” He has gained financial success through competition earnings, sponsorship deals, and brand promotions.
6. Zhang Jike
Zhang Jike has an estimated net worth of $10 million, making him the sixth-richest table tennis player in the world. By winning the World Table Tennis Championship and the World Cup in 2011, then a gold medal in the London Olympics in 2012, Zhang became the fourth table tennis player in history to win a “Grand Slam.” He was the youngest to do so, and he accomplished it in the span of 445 days, the fastest win in history. Prior to those Olympics, Zhang also won the ITTF World Tour singles title three times, won six doubles titles on the ITTF tour, and one doubles title in the Asian Games. Much of his earnings came from prize money from tournament wins.
7. Timo Boll
German player Timo Boll is the world’s seventh-richest table tennis player, with a net worth of $7 million. He has competed in six Olympic games, winning a team silver in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, team bronze medals in London in 2012 and Rio in 2016, and team silver in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. He is a left-handed player known for putting pressure on his opponents with his ability to spin the ball. He continues to build his wealth by playing for the successful Borussia Dortmund team, which currently holds the record for championship wins.
8. Liu Guoliang
With an estimated net worth of $5 million, Lui Guoliang is the eighth-richest table tennis player in the world. When he was only 15 years old, he was selected to play on the Chinese National Table Tennis Team in the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. He won gold medals in singles and doubles there and then went on to win a bronze in singles and a silver in doubles at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games. He is the most decorated male table tennis player in Olympic history. After retiring in 2002, Lui became the youngest-ever head coach of the Chinese National Table Tennis Team. He built his wealth through his impressive career and his salary as a coach.
9. Fan Zhendong
Fan Zhendong is the ninth-richest table tennis player in the world, with an estimated net worth of $5 million. He is currently ranked as the world’s best men’s singles player by the International Table Tennis Federation. In 2012, he became the youngest player to join the Chinese National Team, and in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, he took home a gold medal in the men’s team event and a silver medal in the men’s singles event. Fan is respected for his footwork and powerful forehand loops, and he has a large fanbase on social media. His wealth is a result of his continued success in his table tennis career and his brand deal with the table tennis equipment brand Butterfly.
10. Wang Hao
Chinese player Wang Hao is the tenth-richest table tennis player in the world, with an estimated net worth of $5 million. Before he retired in 2014, Wang won the 2009 singles World Title, two doubles titles in the World Championships, and was a three-time ITTF World Cup winner. He also won the Asian Championship five times and won four Asian Games titles. He competed in three Olympic games: Athens in 2004, Beiling in 2008, and London in 2012. He collected three silver medals and two goals in those games combined. His championship and Olympic wins are the sources of his financial success.
Who is the richest men’s table tennis player in the world?
Ma Long and Wang Liqin are tied as the richest men’s table tennis players in the world, both having an estimated net worth of $20 million. Ma and Wang have won titles in the Olympics, World Championship, and World Cup, making them among the five table tennis players to have won a “Grand Slam.” Both players have earned their impressive wealth by succeeding in competitions throughout their careers. Ma is still active in his career, but Wang retired in 2013.
Who is the richest women’s table tennis player in the world?
Chen Jing is the richest female table tennis player in the world, with an estimated net worth of $18 million. During her career, she competed for China in the 1998 Seoul Olympics, then for Chinese Taipei, the name of Taiwan’s team, in the 1996 and 2000 Olympics. After retiring from her tennis career, she continued to work with the Chinese national team. Much of her wealth came from her success in various tournaments.