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Kerber stuns Sere to win Australian Open title

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  31 Jan 2016 12:00 AM GMT

MELBOURNE, Jan 30: German Angelique Kerber pulled out a stunner to shock one and all by defeating 21-time Major winner and defending champion Sere Williams to lift the women's singles crown at the Australian Open -- her first Grand Slam - at Melbourne Park here on Saturday.

Going into the summit clash, Sere, a six-time winner here, was the heavy favourite with Angelique playing her first Grand Slam fil. The World No.1 Sere had won the pair's last four meetings, all of them in straight sets.

The current World No.5, who will become No.2 when the rankings are revised on Monday, was just too solid in the first set, drawing 23 unforced errors from the American's racquet and breaking twice to take it 6-4. Sere rebounded well to power to a 4-1 lead in the second set, eventually taking it 6-3 to push the contest into the decider.

The seventh seeded German never stopped believing and built a 2-0 lead in the third set. Though the top seed caught up to 2-all, Angelique raced out to a 5-2 lead.

The World No.1 nearly caught up again as she won the next two games and was a point away from 5-all but the seventh seed had just enough steam to filly close the match 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 in two hours and eight minutes at the famous Rod Laver Are.

With the win, Angelique became only the second German woman in the Open Era to win a Major after Steffi Graf, who won 22 Grand Slam titles in her legendary career.

The World No.5 is also the first woman in the Open Era to win a Major having saved a match point in the first round against Misaki Doi.

"Angie, congratulations. You really deserved it. Let me be the first to congratulate you. I hope you enjoy this moment," said Sere.

With a great big smile on her face, Angelique followed Sere to the podium.

"First of all, I would like to say congratulations to Sere. You're really an inspiration for so many people and young tennis players. You've created history. You're a champion. You're also an unbelievably great person. So congratulations to everything you've already done," the German said.

"When I was match point down, I actually had one leg in the plane back to Germany. I got a second chance and I took that chance to be here in the fil to play against Sere. I'm really honoured to be in this fil and to win it - my dream came true tonight." IANS


• Sere had been seeking her seventh Melbourne Park title and 22nd overall.

• Kerber became the first German to win a major title since Steffi Graf in 1999.

• Kerber, however, was not overawed by the occasion of her first Grand Slam fil.

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