Virat Kohli (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)


Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli has found a place among the world’s highest-paid athletes, and he is the only Indian sportsman to be featured in Forbes’ World’s Highest-Paid athletes.

Kohli is ranked 83rd with earnings of USD 24 million.

The 29-year-old is not just a popular name in India, where cricket is worshiped. He is also one of the most popular athletes in the world, “boasting more Twitter followers (25 million-plus) than all but three active sports stars”, Forbes said.

In March, the Board of Control for Cricket in India named Kohli as one of five players to receive the newly-created A+ contracts, which guarantee an annual retainer of more than USD 1 million.

“Yet like the Indian cricket mega-stars who have come before him, Kohli’s big payday comes off the pitch.” He is partnered with a number of top brands including Puma, Pepsi, Audi and Oakley.

Sadly, no women is featured in the World’s Highest-Paid Athletes 2018.

Serena Williams was the only woman to be feature in the top 100 last year, but her prize money dropped this year following the birth of daughter Alexis in September.

The World’s Highest-Paid Athletes 2018 list is topped by 41-year-old Floyd Mayweather, with USD 285 million earnings.

“Boxing’s biggest night of 2017 helped Mayweather and McGregor earn nearly $400m combined,” said Kurt Badenhausen, senior editor at Forbes Media. “But basketball players dominate the top 100 overall thanks to a soaring salary cap triggered by the NBA’s $24bn TV contract.”

He added: “Forbes’ lists of top-earning athletes have long been testosterone heavy. But there has always been at least one female athlete, and as many as three, who qualified since the list was expanded to at least 50 names in 2010. Not this year.”