Contrary to all expectations, World No. 1 Serena Williams was downed by seventh seeded German Angelique Kerber in a thrilling contest in Melbourne Park this past weekend.
The Australian Open Final was the first Grand Slam victory for Kerber, coming in a decisive 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 match dashed Williams’ hopes for leveling the record of another German, tennis great Steffi Graf, who holds 22 major titles, a feat yet-to-be equalled.
Serena has won her last eight tournaments and her overall tally now rests at 21-4. Graceful in defeat, she congratulated Kerber, saying she deserved to win because she was ‘fighting for every point’. Of her loss, Williams said it was unrealistic to expect her to never make mistakes, as she was ‘not a robot’.
Since Steffi Graf’s victory in the 1999 French Open, this is the first time a German player has won a Grand Slam, and Kerber, who says Graf is her icon, was ecstatic about her victory, as well as the fact that one of the first congratulatory messages she received was from the former world champion.
With this victory Kerber moves up to the No. 2 position in the ATP tennis rankings.