Surprise package Kenin stuns Muguruza to win Australian Open title
Melbourne: America's Sofia Kenin stunned two-time Major champion Garbine Muguruza to win the Australian Open on Saturday, completing a surprise run where she has come from nowhere to win her first Grand Slam title.
Despite making her debut in a Major final Kenin, 21, showed all her trademark aggression as she fought back from a set down to win 4-6, 6-2, 6-2 in 2hrs 3mins against the shellshocked Spaniard.
The 14th seed, who will now jump as high as seventh in the world and usurp Serena Williams as America's number one, was in tears at the end and headed straight for her father Alexander, who is her coach.
It was the final twist in a tournament of upsets, after Williams went out in the third round and Kenin upset Australia's world number one Ashleigh Barty in the semi-finals.
"My dream officially came true, I can't describe this feeling," said Moscow-born Kenin. "It's amazing, dreams come true. If you have dreams, go for it, it's going to come true."
Spain's Muguruza, 26, was unseeded for the first time at a Slam since 2014 having suffered a marked loss of form in the last 18 months.
She was resurgent in Melbourne over the past fortnight, but after grabbing the first-set lead, her serve failed her spectacularly.
She totted up eight double-faults in all, three of them in the final game -- including one on the second championship point, handing the title to her younger opponent.
- Kenin fights back -
Muguruza drew first blood at Rod Laver Arena, where the roof was closed for rain in Melbourne, getting the first break of serve.
Moscow-born Kenin, who ended the fairytale run of 15-year-old Coco Gauff on her way to the final, bounced her American stars-and-stripes racquet on the hardcourt in irritation.
The 2016 French Open and 2017 Wimbledon winner Muguruza took the first set in 52 minutes when the young American planted her forehand out.
But the aggressive Kenin upped the ante in the second set, breaking her more experienced opponent in the fourth game and easily holding to sprint into a 4-1 lead. - AFP