Photo: Fred Lee/Getty Images

Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka, 22, has become the highest-paid female athlete in history after raking in $37.4 million last year, Forbes reports.

Why it matters: Pay disparities for women in professional sports have drawn attention in recent years, especially after U.S. women's national soccer team accused the U.S. Soccer Federation of "institutionalized gender discrimination" in 2019. Professional female athletes also told "Axios on HBO" in March that the fight for equal pay has a long way to go.

  • Osaka earned her millions through game winnings, endorsement partners and apparel deals.
  • She came in at No. 29 on Forbes' "Top 100 highest-paid athletes" list, overtaking fellow tennis pro Serena Williams, who earned $36 million last year and came in at No. 33 on the list.

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The coronavirus' disproportionate impact on women workers is eroding years of progress.

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