Kerber was defending the Open-era best tally of her compatriot Steffi Graf and she did it playing the match of her life, beating Williams 6-4 3-6 6-4 to claim her first major title.
Completing victory after two hours and eight minutes, Kerber lay outstretched in disbelief on Rod Laver Arena, having sealed one of the biggest shocks in tennis history.
Williams regained some composure at the start of the second set and Kerber gave her the encouragement she needed, as two double faults gifted the American a break and 3-1 lead.
Many times Williams has stumbled into a third set before motoring to victory but Kerber halted her opponent’s momentum immediately with a hold and early break. The crowning moment came when the American failed to put the ball away and as Kerber drove a half-volley pass into the gap, the crowd rose to their feet and the German pointed her finger up to the sky.
It was the sort of point many matches would turn on but Williams is an exceptional case and she recovered immediately to break back and level at 2-2. Read more