Rickie Fowler said it felt good to prove the doubters wrong after winning his first PGA Tour title at Quail Hollow on Sunday.
The 23-year-old American finally justified his billing as one of the game's brightest star by defeating Rory McIlroy and DA Points in a play-off for the Wells Fargo Championship.
Fowler's only previous victory had come in the Far East but after four runner-up finishes in America the Ryder Cup player admitted his relief at getting over the winning line.
"It's been a wait, but I'm definitely still young, and hopefully this opens the door to many more," he said.
"But it's nice to be mentioned as a PGA Tour winner. There's a lot of people that have doubted or said you'll never win.
"There's all kinds of stuff. So it's nice to kind of shut them up a little bit.
"I definitely knew I was good enough, and it was just getting everything to come together and stay patient."
Fowler and McIlroy go back a long way and the American said it was always a pleasure to do battle with the Northern Irishman, who returned to the top of the world rankings by finishing in second place.
"We've always had a great camaraderie, been good buddies," he added. "I definitely respect him as a player, and I feel like he respects me as well.
"But I've had a lot of fun playing against him. We first played against each other at the Walker Cup in '07, and I look forward to playing against him and hopefully having plenty more tournaments like this where we're battling back and forth.
"There's going to be times where he's going to come out on top and times where I come out on top. I look forward to possibly doing that for a long time."
McIlroy said he was just happy to have another bite of the cherry after DA Points bogeyed the final hole in regulation to allow he and Fowler into a three-way play-off.
"I felt like it was a bonus just to get into the play-off after DA bogeyed the last," he said.
"You wouldn't call the 18th today a birdie hole with that pin. For Rickie to go out and play that hole the way he did, he deserved to win."
McIlroy became world number one for the third time in as many months and he said that provided some consolation after failing to win in the US for a third time.
"That's nice, it's a little consolation. I would rather win the tournament, but yeah, it's good," he said.
"I want to try and play well for the next few weeks and try and solidify my spot there at number one and hopefully start by doing that next week and giving myself another chance to win."