Chen Long the top earner of the year

It's no surprise that world number one Chen Long was the top money winner of the year in world badminton this year.

Chen may not have claimed the top prize at the season-ending World Superseries Finals, but he still finished the year with a cool US$298,413 in prize money – that's roughly US$50,000 more than his Chinese countryman Zhao Yunlei banked as the top earner in 2014.

In all, Chinese shuttlers earned more than a quarter of all prize money in 2015.

The earnings do not take into account income derived from sponsorships or private team salaries, or from other professional leagues.

Spain's Carolina Marin was the second biggest earner, taking home US$226,508.

Despite being out of action for more than half of the year, Malaysian shuttler Lee Chong Wei came in at 14th place, with over US$116,000 in earnings in 2015.

Chong Wei won the last three regular Superseries titles in succession for a welcome late-season earnings boost.

While prize money in badminton is increasing, it still lags way behind tennis. The amount Chen won in 2015 only amounts to about 1.5% of Novak Djokovic's total earnings for the same period.