Naomi Osaka claimed back-to-back Grand Slam titles after winning the Australian Open final ©Getty Images

Japan's Naomi Osaka became the first women’s player since 2001 to win her first two Grand Slam titles back-to-back after overcoming Petra Kvitová in a dramatic women’s singles final at the Australian Open.

Both players headed into the match at the Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne with the additional incentive of becoming world number one should they secure the title.

The opening set proved a tightly fought contest between the duo, with a tie break forced to separate the pair.

Osaka took command against her Czech opponent to take the first set, moving her closer to backing up her US Open triumph in New York City last September with a second Grand Slam title.

Her victory at the US Open had become in dramatic circumstances after her American opponent Serena Williams became embroiled in a controversial exchange with the chair umpire.

Osaka was forced to overcome a turmoil of her own in Melbourne after seeing three consecutive match points slip by in the second set.

Eight seed Kvitová, competing in her first Grand Slam final since she suffered multiple injuries during a knife attack in 2016, seized on her reprieve to immediately break Osaka’s serve.

The Czech player completed the recovery to win the second set 7-5, as she sought a third Grand Slam title.

The two-time Wimbledon champion appeared to have the momentum in the match before Osaka impressively recovered from her blip to secure the first break of the deciding set.

Naomi Osaka recovered from a blip in the second set to win the decider ©Getty Images
Naomi Osaka recovered from a blip in the second set to win the decider ©Getty Images

Kvitová saved three break points later in the set to keep her hopes alive, forcing her opponent to serve out the victory.

Despite saving a fourth match point, Kvitová was unable to save a fifth as Osaka clinched a 7-6, 5-7, 6-4 victory.

The Japanese player became the first player since the United States’ Jennifer Capriati in 2001 to win her first two Grand Slam titles back-to-back.

Capriati won her first Grand Slam at the Australian Open before winning the French Open.

"I want to thank everyone, you make this tournament possible," said Osaka.

"Thanks to my team.

"I don't think I would have made it through this week without you.

"Behind a tennis player is always a great team so thank you."

The 21-year-old has also become the youngest women’s world number one since Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki achieved the feat aged 20 back in 2010.