Serena sets prize money record

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The Independent Online

Serena Williams has set a single-season prize money record on the women's tour by earning $6,545,586 in 2009, according to the Women's Tennis Association.

The 11-times grand slam champion and world number one now has career earnings approaching $30 million.

"It's incredible how much women's tennis has grown in the last few years and that the Tour has increased our prize money so significantly," Williams said in a statement.

"We are very fortunate to have an opportunity to be so well rewarded for doing something we love."

This season Williams eclipsed the previous record of $5,429,586 set by Belgian Justine Henin in 2007.

Earlier this year, Williams also surpassed Lindsay Davenport as record holder in career prize money earnings on the Tour, and became the first professional female athlete to earn more than $23 million in a single professional sports league.

The 28-year-old American won the 2009 season-ending Championships as well as Australian Open and Wimbledon crowns this season.