Charleston - Angelique Kerber ended her WTA dry spell with a gritty three-set victory over rising US talent Madison Keys on Sunday for the Charleston clay court crown.
Kerber, a former world No 5, battled back from 4-1 down in the third set to defeat 20-year-old Keys 6-2, 4-6, 7-5.
The 27-year-old German withstood 49 winners from Keys, belting a modest 17 winners herself but keeping mistakes to a minimum with just 21 unforced errors.
"I feel great," said Kerber, who broke Keys for a 6-5 lead in the final set, and polished off the win by holding her serve at love.
"Madison is a great player and she played very well today so I think both of us are champions," the German said.
Kerber denied Keys a second WTA crown in as many finals appearances.
In her only prior title match, Keys surprised Kerber in the final at Eastbourne last year one of the four WTA finals Kerber lost in 2014 in four opportunities.
Kerber's fourth WTA title was her first since she won at Linz in 2013, and she was off to an erratic start in 2015.
She lost her opening matches at the Australian Open, Antwerp, Doha and Indian Wells this year as she slipped out of the top 10 in the world rankings.
With Sunday's win she's projected to jump two places in the rankings to 14th.
Despite the defeat Keys - who reached her first Grand Slam semi-final at the Australian Open this year - is projected to reach a career-high ranking of 17th in the world.