Canadian Bianca Andreescu has her first WTA title.
The unusual 18-year-old from Mississauga, Ont., Disturbed eight-year-old German Angelique Kerber 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 in the women's final at BNP Paribas Open on Sunday.
"Hopefully, this moment may be a great inspiration to many young athletes, because as I always say, if you believe in yourself, everything is possible," Andreescu later said in her interview on the spot. "And like my mother always told me over the years, if you work hard, you dream big to be big so you can achieve so many things.
"That's what I've done over many years, and now this moment has become a reality, so it's really, really wild."
WATCH | Highlights from Andreescu's historic win at Indian Wells:
Kerber, a former world no. 1, praised Andreescu afterwards.
"Congratulations to Bianca for an incredible tournament," Kerber said. "You just played amazing the whole tournament and so you deserve to win the title here."
The Canadian was also gracious to his German opponent.
"It was great to share the court with you today," she said. "You are an incredible master and an inspiration."
Andreescu has become a great story of women's circles this year. With Sunday's victory Andreescu has won 28-of-31 matches this season and becomes the first wild card entry to capture this event.
She is expected to climb 36 places for No. 24 in the WTA Tour rankings on Monday.
Andreescu earned $ 1,354,010 million for the victory and received lavish praise from none other than the legendary Rod Laver.
"A star is born, congratulations on @Bandreescu_ which match you are," Laver tweeted after the game.
Andreescu needed approx. 40 minutes to take the opening set. None of the players did well – Andreescu was 60 per cent. At first serving, while Kerber was 67 per cent. – but the Canadian kept serving all the way and won all points at his second service, compared to just 55%. For Kerber.
The German also had 14 undisturbed errors in the opening set.
The two remained on the server to start the second set, although Andreescu seriously threatened to get another break in the third game. But the Germans repeatedly held out the fighting Canadian before moving on 2-1.
And Kerber forced the Canadian to continue working hard in the fourth game, registering a break on some Andreescu undisturbed errors for 3-1 advantage. Then the Germans serve again to win a third straight game to control 4-1 lead.
And after Kerber served to advance 5-2, Andreescu showed frustration by repeatedly beating his racket on the surface as she left the field. The two then kept serving, with Kerber serving out the set 6-3.
Kerber played a much more aggressive game in the set when Andreescu had 19 undisturbed errors. And the Germans were 1-to-1 in break chances, while the Canadians were 0-for-2.
The two again kept serving to start the third set, but Andreescu required medical treatment on her right arm / shoulder after running 2-1. But the Germans took control of the set with a break to continue 3-2 when Andreescu sent a shot into the net.
During the break Andreescu told his trainer, Sylvain Bruneau, "my feet burned" and that she had trouble moving. Bruneau calmly encouraged her student to continue to fight and compete.
Andreescu afforded the heart. She broke Kerber to tie the match 3-3, kept serving to advance 4-3, then broke the German again for an upcoming 5-3 advantage with the chance to earn the title.
Andreescu had three championship points but could not pull the trigger. Kerber secured the break when Andreescus tried to drop the net into the net to pull out within 5-4, when the Canadian got some treatment on her right leg during the break.
Once again Andreescu looked good when the game resumed, cutting off her impressive tournament by converting the fourth break and career championship point first. And by catching the victory, she kissed the playing field and put it on before admitting the crowd.
WATCH | Championship point: