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Ryoyu Kobayashi leaps closer to second sweep of Four Hills competition


Ryoyu Kobayashi remained on track to win all four legs of this season’s Four Hills ski jumping competition after securing victory in the third event held in Bischofshofen, Austria, on Wednesday.

Kobayashi, who won after scoring 291.3 points with jumps of 137 meters and 137.5 meters, heads into the final event on Thursday with a 17.9-point lead over Norway’s Marius Lindvik in the overall Four Hills standings.

Should he win on Thursday, the 25-year-old Japanese will be the first ski jumper in history to complete two clean sweeps of the prestigious Four Hills event.

“I was more nervous on my first jump. It’s not that I don’t have it (Four Hills sweep) in mind but I just want to jump well tomorrow. I’m doing what I always do,” Kobayashi, who last took the title in the 2018-2019 season, said.

The Four Hills Tournament takes place annually around the turn of the year in Germany and Austria. Due to strong winds, the third event in Innsbruck, originally scheduled for Tuesday, was moved to Bischofshofen. The fourth event will be held on the same jump as the third.

On Wednesday, Lindvik led after landing a 137.5-meter effort in the first round, but eventually finished second behind Kobayashi on 286.6 points. Fellow Norwegian Halvor Egner Granerud landed third.

Kobayashi had his first clean sweep in the 2018-2019 season, becoming the third jumper ever to achieve the feat.

Kobayashi’s win in Bischofshofen was his fourth World Cup victory in a row, his sixth of the season and 25th of his career.

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