MELBOURNE • Angelique Kerber celebrated her stunning Australian Open final victory over Serena Williams by taking a swim in the Yarra River next to the Rod Laver Arena yesterday.
Kerber, who also sprayed champagne and posed with the trophy at Melbourne's Government House, took the chilly plunge along with members of her team.
The 28-year-old had promised Eurosport journalist Matthias Stach that she would jump into the river if she defeated top-ranked Williams on Saturday. And she accomplished that with a 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 win to secure her first Major title.
There promises to be more fun for Kerber's team later in the year as she will make good on a bet with her coach Torben Beltz to skydive together. She will also take a dancing class with her support staff and her physio will mark her victory in ink by getting a tattoo of the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup.
"It was cold, but it was worth it," said Kerber after her dip.
The stunt has echoes of Jim Courier's celebration in 1992 when he dived into the Yarra after winning the men's title.
Having risen to a career-high world No. 2 ranking, Kerber knows that she will now have a target on her back.
"I think it's still tough to beat Serena," she said. "But of course I think that a lot of new and good players are coming. They will challenge Serena. They will challenge me. Let's see what happens in the next few months."