American teenager Coco Gauff fulfilled the potential she has long promised by landing her first Grand Slam title with a fightback win over Aryna Sabalenka in the US Open final.
Gauff, seeded sixth, started slowly in front of an expectant home crowd but grew in confidence to wear down second seed Sabalenka in New York.
Gauff, 19, clinched a 2-6 6-3 6-2 win on a delirious Arthur Ashe Stadium.
“I feel like I’m in a little bit of shock at the moment,” Gauff said.
“I feel like God puts you through tribulations and trials and that makes this even sweeter,” added the American, who lost in her only other major singles final at the 2022 French Open.
“I’m thankful for this moment. I don’t have any words.”
Australian Open champion Sabalenka, meanwhile, must wait for a second major title.
The 25-year-old Belarusian can at least console herself with the knowledge she will become the world number one for the first time.
Gauff will rise to a career-high third when the latest rankings are released on Monday – but claiming her first major at her home Grand Slam is what really matters.
When sealing victory with a backhand winner on her first championship point, Gauff immediately fell on to the court and laid on the sideline with her hands covering her face.
Almost the whole 24,000 crowd, which provided boisterous support throughout as they willed Gauff to victory, erupted in a frenzied celebration.
Gauff, overcome with emotion, made a heart sign to the fans before going up to the stands to see her parents Corey and Candi.
All three hugged and jumped in a circle as the family’s sacrifices and hard work had resulted in one of the sport’s biggest prizes.
Asked to describe that moment, a laughing Gauff said: “When I hugged my dad, I didn’t see him, because he went immediately for the embrace – but I heard him crying.
“I have never seen that man cry in my life. My mum, I knew she was going to cry regardless if I won or lost.
“Honestly [I was thinking] nothing. The whole time I was saying to myself, ‘Oh my goodness, how is this real?”