Serena an inspiration for new Wimbledon champion Kerber
Angelique Kerber hailed Serena Williams as an inspiration after beating the American great to win her first Wimbledon title on Saturday.
Williams fell short in her bid to tie Margaret Court's record of 24 grand slam singles titles, as Kerber's fierce defence and pinpoint accuracy earned her a third major trophy.
There was certainly no shame in Williams' defeat, particularly considering she was bedridden for six weeks as a result of life-threatening complications following the birth of her first child 10 months ago.
Kerber, who lost to Williams in the final at the All England Club two years ago, paid a glowing tribute to her opponent - a seven-time Wimbledon winner.
"It's a dream come true," the champion said in an on-court interview with the BBC.
"Serena, you are a great person and champion, such an inspiration for everyone watching. I'm sure you [will] win your next grand slam soon, so congratulations for coming back.
"I knew I had to play my best against a champion like Serena - it is always an honour to share a court with her.
"It is my second chance to play in front of you on Centre Court, I enjoyed every second of the last two weeks so thanks for all the support."
Kerber is the first German since Steffi Graf in 1996 to win a Wimbledon singles' title and the 11th seed paid tribute to her support team.
"Thanks to my box, my family and friends and my team watching at home. Without you I wouldn't be here, so thanks," she added.