A year ago she was watching on crutches, but now she'll play in the main event. Daria Gavrilova has won the third and final Australian Open wildcard play-off event.
WTA Staff

MELBOURNE, Australia - Daria Gavrilova, originally from Russia but making the transition to full Australian status on the WTA, has conquered the third and final Australian Open wildcard play-off event, winning on the very same Melbourne Park courts the main event will soon be played on.

The No.3-seeded Gavrilova didn't lose a set all week, including a 6-1, 6-3 win over No.1 seed Olivia Rogowska in the semifinals and a 6-4, 6-2 win over No.4 seed Arina Rodionova in the final.

The victory was even sweeter given a year ago she was watching the action at Melbourne Park on crutches - she tore her ACL playing the WTA 125K Series event in Taipei in November 2013.

"Last year I was watching this on crutches after my surgery, and I was jealous of everyone playing!" Gavrilova recalled. "Now I'm here and I won, and I'm really happy! It's just really exciting.

"I love being here and I really love Melbourne. I can't wait for the Australian Open."

Check out highlights from Sunday's final between Gavrilova and Rodionova in the below video:

Though she is still representing Russia on the WTA, Gavrilova is now a permanent resident of Australia and will represent the home country at the upcoming Australian Open. It will be her second Grand Slam representing Australia - she also did it at the US Open this past year, where she fell in the qualies.

The 20-year-old Gavrilova, a former junior World No.1, will be playing the main draw of a Grand Slam for the second time in her career - she was main draw at the Australian Open in 2013 as a qualifier, eventually making the second round before falling to fellow qualifier Lesia Tsurenko of Ukraine.

The other two players who earned wildcards into the Happy Slam were Irina Falconi, who won the wildcard play-off event in the US, and Chang Kai-Chen, who won the play-off event in China.