Japan's Naomi Osaka celebrates with the championship trophy after winning Australian Open. Photograph:( AFP )
Osaka made it two Grand Slam titles in a row after a see-sawing 2hr 27min match.
Japan's Naomi Osaka battled past Czech eighth seed Petra Kvitova 7-6 (7/2), 5-7, 6-4 to win her first Australian Open crown Saturday and become the new world number one.
She became the first Japanese player to win the Australian Open.
Also, the win made Osaka the first player from an Asian country to claim the world number one ranking.
"I felt like I was in a state of shock through the entire trophy presentation," the 21-year-old said.
A rattled Osaka almost blew her title hopes with one hand on the trophy when she failed to convert three championship points leading 5-3 in the second set.
The never-say-die Kvitova forced a deciding set before Osaka finally edged ahead with a decisive break early in the third.
"Of course I felt very disappointed and sad when I had three match points," she said.
"I tried to tell myself there's nothing I can do about it. Told myself I'm playing a final and need to keep fighting and couldn’t act immature and needed to keep fighting."
The fourth seed and US Open champion made it two Grand Slam titles in a row after a see-sawing 2hr 27min match.
The hard-fought victory made Osaka the first Asian, male or female, to hold the world's top ranking, taking over from Romania's Simona Halep.