An emotional Angelique Kerber said it was "crazy" to think of herself as a grand-slam champion after her sensational Australian Open victory over Serena Williams on Saturday.
Kerber claimed her maiden slam by beating the out-of-sorts world number one 6-4 3-6 6-4 on Rod Laver Arena.
The seventh seed became the first German to win a major since the legendary Steffi Graf was crowned French Open champion in 1999.
Kerber had never reached a grand slam final before this week and the world number six was in dreamland as she savoured her finest hour.
The 28-year-old said: "Firstly I would like to say congrats Serena. You're an inspiration for so many young tennis players. You've created history, you are a champion and you are an unbelievably great person.
"When I played here in the first round [against Misaki Doi] I was match point down, I had one leg on the plane to Germany and now I'm here.
"It was an honour to play in this final against Serena and to win it, my dream came true tonight."
She added: "My whole life I have worked really hard and now I'm here, I can say I'm a grand-slam champion and that sounds really crazy.
"This has been the best two weeks of my career."