SYDNEY - Germany's Angelique Kerber beat Australia's Ashleigh Barty in straight sets to win the Sydney International for her ninth consecutive win on Saturday ahead of next week's Australian Open.

Russian qualifier Daniil Medvedev fought off tigerish Australian youngster Alex de Minaur to win his first ATP Tour title at the Sydney International.

Medvedev completed a all-conquering week to hit back from losing the opening set to extinguish de Minaur, 1-6, 6-4, 7-5. It was 21-year-old Medvedev's seventh win this week, giving him solid preparation for next week's Australian Open in Melbourne where he faces another Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis in the first round.

"I'm the kind of person, the more emotions I feel, the less I show them, actually, especially if they are good ones," Medvedev said. "After the match, I didn't fall down or anything, but I'm really happy. I mean, to make it through the quallies, there were so many circumstances."

Looking ahead to the Australian Open he added: "I need to be humble with this, because to win this tournament is good, but I want to win some rounds in Australia. "And it's going to be very tough to get back again on the court, especially against Thanasi, I'm sure the crowd will be crazy in Melbourne for him. It's a five-set match, so I just need to do my best at recovery to be good on Tuesday." Former world No1 Kerber was too strong for Barty, winning the final 6-4, 6-4 to give her a massive confidence boost for the year's opening Grand Slam in Melbourne.

It was Kerber's first title since the 2016 US Open and was the left-hander's second win over the 19th-ranked Barty in three meetings. Kerber, who began last year as No.1 before finishing at No.22, continued her 2018 resurgence and remains unbeaten this year. "I had a great week. I played good tennis," Kerber said.

"The final against Ash was not easy, but I was able to play my game in important moments. So I'm really happy and proud to win the first title in 2018. It's just the beginning of the year, but I think I'm getting closer to my best the level again and just trying to focus from match to match and trying to play again my tennis like I played in the last years, especially 2016."

Kerber won her four matches at last week's mixed teams Hopman Cup in Perth before her five victories in Sydney. Kerber claimed the first break of the match for a 3-2 lead, an advantage she would not relinquish as she went on to take the opening set.

Barty was in further trouble when she immediately surrendered serve in the second set, but in the second game she broke back to level at 1-1, igniting the home crowd.

Kerber and Barty went on service until the seventh game, when the German broke after a loose Barty game when she lost serve to love with a forehand into the net. With the break in hand and a 4-3 lead, the German didn't falter, remaining aggressive and serving out the match three games later to win her first title in Sydney after falling in the 2014 final. It is her 11th career WTA title and positions her as one of the favourites for the Australian Open.

It was the first time an Australian woman featured in the Sydney International final since 2005 when Alicia Molik took the title over Sam Stosur.

"I felt like it was a pretty good level. To be honest, I felt like I probably played some of the better tennis that I have this week," Barty said. "And Angie is on fire. She's such a competitor and makes you work so hard for each point. I certainly felt like it was a pretty good level for a final."