Top 10 Richest Cricketers In The World

Cricket is one of the most popular sports in the world, with billions of fans spanning across various countries. While cricket may not be as lucrative as other sports like soccer and basketball in terms of salaries and endorsements, the top cricketers still earn a massive amount of money through their cricketing careers.

In this article, we will take a look at the top 10 richest cricketers in the world as of August 2023. The list comprises of active cricketers who have amassed huge wealth thanks to massive pay checks from national teams and domestic T20 leagues along with endorsement deals with major brands. The net worth figures are estimated based on their known assets and earnings.

So who are the wealthiest cricketers playing the game today? Let’s find out.

Also Check: Top 10 Most Handsome Cricketers In The World

1. Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli, the former captain of the Indian cricket team, tops the list with an estimated net worth of over $150 million according to Forbes. He is by far the richest cricketer in the world currently.

The 33-year-old is the all-time leading run scorer in T20 internationals as well as one of the greatest ODI batsmen ever with over 12,500 runs. Virat Kohli’s income comes from match fees, BCCI contract, brand endorsements and his salary from Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL.

Some of Virat’s major endorsement deals are with brands like Audi, MRF, Uber, Puma, Hero MotoCorp and Google Pixel which contribute significantly to his net worth. He has consistently been ranked as one of the most valuable athletes by Forbes in recent years.

2. MS Dhoni

Former Indian captain MS Dhoni is the 2nd richest cricketer in the world with an estimated net worth of around $115 million. ‘Captain Cool’ retired from international cricket in 2020 but still plays in the IPL and other domestic leagues.

Dhoni has led India to victories in the T20 World Cup, ODI World Cup and Champions Trophy – the only captain to achieve this remarkable feat. He has made over $31 million from playing in IPL tournaments according to Forbes.

The 41-year-old also earns around $5 million every year through various endorsements with brands like Orient Electric, Snickers, Indigo Paints, Mastercard and Bharat Matrimony. He is the co-owner of Ranchi Rays, a hockey franchise in HIL.

3. Chris Gayle

West Indies cricketing star Chris Gayle comes in at number three on the list with an estimated net worth of $40 million. The 43-year-old is renowned for his explosive batting and holds numerous T20 records.

Gayle is the highest run-scorer ever in T20 history with over 14,500 runs. He has earned big bucks playing for various franchises in T20 leagues such as IPL, CPL, BBL, PSL etc. His current IPL salary at Punjab Kings is $662,000.

The ‘Universe Boss’ also earns outside cricket through sponsorship deals with brands like Spartan Sports, AXE Deo etc. He is involved in multiple business ventures and even released his own biography in 2017.

4. Sachin Tendulkar

The legendary Sachin Tendulkar is the 4th richest cricketer in the world even after his retirement with an estimated net worth of $35 million. Sachin is widely regarded as the greatest batsman of the modern era if not all time.

The ‘Little Master’ made his debut for India in 1989 as a 16-year old and went on to dominate bowlers for over two decades scoring 34,000+ runs and 100 centuries in international cricket – both records yet to be broken.

Since retirement in 2013, Sachin has earned millions through sponsorship deals with brands like Adidas, BMW, SBI, Toshiba etc. He co-owns Bengaluru Blasters cricket team in the Champions League T20 and Kerala Blasters football club in ISL.

5. Shane Watson

Australian all-rounder Shane Watson is next on the list with an estimated net worth of $35 million. The 41-year-old has made his fortune mainly through playing in T20 leagues all over the world after retirement from international cricket in 2016.

Watson has earned over $10 million just from playing in IPL tournaments where he has bagged multiple titles including one for Chennai Super Kings in 2018. He also makes around $875,000 playing for Quetta Gladiators in PSL.

Brand endorsements with the likes of TAG Heuer, ASICS and Gunn & Moore contribute to Watson’s healthy bank balance. He is also involved in a few business ventures and owns an Indian restaurant chain called Taste of Tasmania.

6. Ricky Ponting

Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting has built a net worth estimated at $30 million since retiring from cricket in 2012. ‘Punter’ as he’s known to fans, captained Australia to two World Cup trophies in 2003 and 2007.

He is one of the highest run-scorers ever in international cricket with over 27,000 runs across formats. Ponting was the coach of IPL side Delhi Capitals until recently. He earns around $450,000 per year through coaching and commentary.

The 48-year-old makes good money through sponsorship deals with brands like Adidas, Kookaburra, Valvoline and Rexona partnering with him over the course of his playing career. He owns a real estate portfolio of over $18 million.

7. Brian Lara

Legendary West Indies batsman Brian Lara has an estimated net worth of $30 million as of 2023. Lara remains the only player in history to have scored 400 runs in a test innings – a feat he achieved against England in 2004.

He has accumulated over 22,000 international runs in a stellar career spanning 17 years. Since retirement, Lara earns around $5 million annually through coaching, endorsements, commentary etc.

Some major brands associated with the former Windies skipper are Adidas, MRF, Pepsi and Carlton Cricket Club. He is the owner of a popular sports bar called Brian Lara’s Sports Bar based in Port of Spain, Trinidad.

8. Yuvraj Singh

Flamboyant Indian all-rounder Yuvraj Singh has built an estimated net worth of $30 million. The 2011 World Cup hero played international cricket for almost 17 years before retiring in 2019.

Yuvraj has earned over $27 million from playing IPL, the T20 league in India per Forbes. He has also made big money through a range of endorsements with popular brands like Puma, Pepsico, Revital, Laureus and Microsoft over his career.

The 40-year-old also earns around $100,000 for each brand endorsement post retirement. Yuvraj is also involved in his philanthropic YouWeCan Foundation and has stakes in sports franchises like the World Wrestling League and SLAM! the mixed martial arts league.

9. Shane Warne

Widely regarded as the greatest leg-spinner of all time, Australian legend Shane Warne had built a net worth of $25 million before his sudden demise in March 2022 at the age of just 52.

Warne made his test debut in 1992 against India and went on to pick over 1,000 international wickets in a 15-year career. He was the Wisden Leading Cricketer in the World in 1997 and 1998.

Since retirement in 2007, Warne earned handsome paychecks from coaching IPL teams like Rajasthan Royals and commentary gigs. He also co-founded a menswear brand called Spinners in 2018.

10. Gautam Gambhir

Indian opening batsman Gautam Gambhir rounds off the list with an estimated net worth of $25 million. He was one of the top performers for India during their World Cup triumph on home soil in 2011.

Gambhir has earned over $5 million playing for Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL, whom he led to two titles in 2012 and 2014. He has built his personal fortune with smart investments after retirement in 2018.

The cricketer-turned-politician was elected as MP from East Delhi in 2019. He earns around $37,000 every year as salary and allowances as an MP. Gambhir also earns from brand endorsements and his chain of retail stores.

Highest Paying National Teams

While T20 leagues swell the bank balances of leading cricketers from around the world, national teams still remain a major source of income through annual contracts and match fees. Let’s take a look at some of the highest paying cricket boards:

  • BCCI – Grade A+ Indian players earn ₹7 crore annually, test match fees of ₹15 lakh per match.
  • ECB – England’s test captain Ben Stokes reportedly earns around £1.1 million per year.
  • Cricket Australia – Top contracted players like Pat Cummins earn $2 million per year excluding match fees.
  • CSA – South Africa raised top player salaries to around $118,000 in 2020, test match fees of $9,000 per game.
  • NZC – Highest contracted NZ players get $236,000 annually plus $9,500 per test match.
  • PCB – Babar Azam as Pakistan captain reportedly earns PKR 1.5 crore per year in salary and match fees.
  • WICB – Top West Indies stars earn $140,000 annually as retainer contracts plus $7,500 per test match.

So while IPL has dramatically increased cricketer earnings, national teams still contribute substantially to the player’s income.

Major Earning Sources for Top Cricketers

The massive net worth figures of leading cricketers may seem astronomical to average people. But it’s important to understand the major earning sources that enable such wealth.

Here are the significant income channels for top-level cricketers today:

  • T20 Franchise Leagues – IPL, PSL, CPL, BBL etc. The short fast-paced leagues offer high salaries and massive viewership.
  • National Team Contracts – Retainer fees plus match fees and performance bonuses.
  • Endorsements – Sponsorship deals with brands related to sports, lifestyle, fashion, motors, electronics etc.
  • Coaching & Commentary – Former players can earn big through coaching franchises or as TV experts.
  • Business Investments – Top cricketers invest their money in real estate, restaurants, sports teams etc. for additional income sources.

5 Highest Overall Earning Cricketers

Now that we’ve listed the richest active cricketers based on their current estimated net worth, let’s look at the 5 highest earning cricketers of all time as per total career earnings tracked by Forbes and other sources:

  • MS Dhoni – $170 million
  • Virat Kohli – $150 million
  • Sachin Tendulkar – $120 million
  • Ricky Ponting – $65 million
  • Brian Lara – $60 million

Dhoni tops this list thanks to being one of the first superstars of the lucrative IPL, followed closely by current top draw Virat Kohli. Sachin Tendulkar was cricket’s first global megastar from India earning big even post-retirement. Ponting and Lara earned handsomely during their playing peak and through assignments later on.

Final Thoughts

It’s astonishing how the advent and massive success of T20 leagues like IPL has transformed the finances and lifestyles of professional cricketers over the past decade. Top players now earn in just a couple of months what earlier generations made in their entire career span.

Virat Kohli leads the current rich list through his superstardom and universal brand appeal, followed by the achievements of veterans like MS Dhoni, Chris Gayle and others. It will be interesting to see how the rankings shape up over the next few years as more young talent emerges.

While money and glamor are certainly major perks, fans will no doubt hope that these top superstar cricketers continue to uphold the integrity and compete with full dedication in the spirit of the sport wherever they play.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is the richest cricketer in the world currently?

Virat Kohli is currently the richest cricketer in the world with an estimated net worth of over $150 million

How much do cricketers really earn from IPL?

Top cricketers have earned anywhere between ₹50 crore to ₹100+ crore over the years playing in IPL tournaments. The highest bid ever was ₹15.5 crore for Pat Cummins in 2020.

Who is the richest between Dhoni and Kohli?

MS Dhoni is estimated to be richer with a net worth of $115 million vs $150 million for Virat Kohli. However, Kohli is likely to overtake Dhoni soon.

Who is the poorest cricketer?

Lasith Malinga, the former Sri Lankan pacer reportedly had a negative net worth of -₹180 crore in 2015 due to financial mismanagement.

Which country pays cricketers most?

The BCCI is the richest cricket board paying Indian cricketers the highest. Top players earn ₹7 crore annually plus ₹15 lakh per test match, besides IPL salary.

So those were some of the most frequently asked questions on cricketer earnings and net worths that many fans are curious about.

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