Lydia Ko v Danny Lee...and the winner is...

The clear answer Lee in terms of prizemoney, even though he is much lower ranked.

An awards furore in Britain has highlighted the alarming pay gap between men and women golfers.

British Open winner Georgia Hall was snubbed as BBC Sports Personality of the Year candidate, yet male Open winner Francesco Molinari was named World Sports Star of the Year.


The Telegraph subsequently reported that according to recent research, the gap between earnings for star men and women players is actually growing.

"Research by Golf Travel Centre shows that the top 10 female players net 82 per cent less per stroke played than the top 10 males. That is a seven per cent rise on 2017 and nine per cent on 2016," the report said.

And the gender gap is even greater lower down the rankings.

Ko and Lee are on the American tours, where they earned similar amounts in 2018 even though Ko had far more success.

Danny Lee - sitting pretty. Photo / Getty Images
Danny Lee - sitting pretty. Photo / Getty Images

Ko, the former world number one, has slipped to 14th but still won a tournament and had 10 top 10 finishes. She earned $1.12m.

Lee, who finished just inside the world's top 100, had no victories and three top 10 finishes. He earned $1.86m.

There is a natural and unflattering comparison with tennis, where men and women are paid equal prize money in the Grand Slam tournaments, although in golf's defence there is a significant difference in how the sports are run.

Men and women compete in the same major tennis events, whereas the golf tours are completely separate.


The Telegraph reported women took home only 25 per cent of the near $93m prize money handed out in the 2018 majors.

"While women tennis players have gained equal prize money in the four grand-slam events, there are still huge differences in golf's biggest events," it continued.

There are deeper problems for women's golf in Europe where there were only 13 events outside of the majors, eight less than than in 2010. Sponsors are quitting leading to what the Telegraph described as a "grim scene".