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The 34-year-old American edged a high-quality final on a blustery Centre Court as she avenged a surprise loss to Kerber in the final of this year’s Australian Open.
Fourth seed Kerber stuck to her guns in a fiercely-fought first set but wavered at 5-6 when a couple of unforced errors gave a fired-up Williams the chance to grab the opener, which she did on her second set point.
World number one Williams faced a moment of danger when Kerber earned a first break point at 3-3 in the second set but she responded by blasting down consecutive aces to stay ahead.
Under severe pressure throughout the contest Kerber crumbled in the next game, skewing a backhand wide to give Williams a 5-3 lead and the chance to serve for the title.
Williams was in no mood to prolong the contest and stormed 40-0 ahead, sealing victory with a volley on her first match point before collapsing backwards joyfully on to the Centre Court turf.