Phil Taylor admitted even he was surprised after he twice recovered from two sets down to beat Michael van Gerwen 7-4 and claim his 16th world darts title.
Taylor trailed 2-0 and then 4-2 before reeling off five sets in a row to take victory in a thrilling final at Alexandra Palace.
He told Sky Sports: "I am absolutely over the moon, I can't explain how I feel. It's the biggest night of my life.
"I'm 53 next year and I'm coming back to defend a world title. It's ridiculous really."
Taylor, who had been involved in an on-stage spat with Raymond van Barneveld after his semi-final win, paid tribute to Van Gerwen's display in the Dutchman's first world final.
"I've got to give Michael every credit, he's phenomenal," said Taylor.
"I was 2-0 down, then 2-2, then 4-2 down, then 4-4 - I couldn't seem to crack him, and in my mind I'm thinking it's his first time, maybe he'll miss a couple of doubles.
"All of a sudden my darts that were going on the wire were going in and the crowd got behind me and lifted me - they won it for me tonight."
Beaten finalist Van Gerwen paid tribute to the new 16-time world champion, saying: "Phil played great tonight. It was a tough game for me. Phil was awesome.
"I want to say thanks to the crowd and everyone who helped me along."
Will Phil Taylor retire from darts after the final?