Australian sensation Scotty James qualified for the snowboarding final Tuesday in the ongoing PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games. James will square off against American Shaun White and Japan’s Ayumu Hirano in arguably the greatest halfpipe showdown in Winter Olympics history.
A potential showdown between the trio was a major talking point ahead of the Winter Games in South Korea. While some reckon Hirano is the most technically sound snowboarder, there are those who believe White has the best possible technique. The sport’s three best riders laid down their markers Tuesday and are set to deliver a treat to snowboarding fans in the final.
As described by The Australian Associated Press, James delivered a near flawless performance on Tuesday, notching up 89 points in the first run before tightening the screws in the second.
“He (Scotty James) turned it on with the second. Laying on some of his biggest tricks including front side and backside 1260s, the Victorian raised the bar and took the qualifying lead with a score of 96.75. Two-time Olympic gold medallist White was up to the challenge. His second run scored a 98.5 and there were no complaints from James,” read a report published Tuesday afternoon.
Halfpipe Final: Bitter rivals ready for ultimate showdown
Scotty James v Shaun White has been the sport’s hottest rivalry for several years. A month ago, James questioned White’s perfect score at their World Cup showdown while criticising judges of robbing him of victory. He will now get the opportunity to set the record straight at the sport’s biggest stage.
White is ready for the Aussie’s challenge. “I would have loved to have skated into finals on my 93 (points) but everybody started putting it down. I’m like ‘OK, if we’re going there, we’re going there’. I think it’s great for the sport and it’s great for a guy like me that needs the motivation — I’m excited for the final.”
Meanwhile, Australia’s Scotty James expects his bitter rival to raise the stakes in the Winter Olympics 2018 snowboarding final. “Absolutely. I expected to Shaun to come out and put a run down like that. I watched his run – it was a good run – it had good amplitude and was pretty flawless,” said James. Stay tuned for the latest news and updates from the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games.