Germany’s Angelique Kerber on Saturday became the first German lady since Steffi Graf in 1999 to win a grand slam title when she defeated favourite, Serena Williams, in the Women’s Singles final of the 2016 Australian Open.
Seventh seed Kerber, won a thrilling three sets in the final 6-4 3-6 6-4 at Melbourne Park.
Williams, 34, was beaten for just the fifth time in 26 Grand Slam finals, and the American missed the chance to tie Graf’s open-era record of 22 titles.
Kerber said it was a dream come true to achieve her feat.
“It’s my dream come. I worked for this my whole life,” said the German.
“I was match point down in the first match and I had one leg on the plane back to Germany. I got a second chance and I’m so honoured.”
Williams congratulated Kerber after the game.
“Angie, congratulations. You deserve this and I’m so happy for you. I really hope you enjoy this moment.
“It was remarkably fun and I really enjoyed all of this.”
Kerber, who saved a match point in her first-round win over Misaki Doi, will move up to number two in the world rankings.
Kerber had won just one of six previous matches against Williams and was making her Grand Slam final debut, but she was the better player over two hours and eight minutes on Rod Laver Arena.
She led Williams in the ace count until the latter stages, limiting her to just seven overall, while the American racked up 46 errors to just 13 by Kerber.
Williams made 23 mistakes in the first set alone – sparking memories of her desperately nervous display in losing to Roberta Vinci at the US Open last September – and Kerber took full advantage to claim it after 39 minutes.