• Kyodo

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Ayana Onozuka became the first Japanese male or female to win a halfpipe gold medal at the freestyle skiing world championships on Saturday.

Onozuka qualified for the women’s final with the second-best mark. The Sochi Olympic bronze medalist produced a score of 89.80 points in her second run to win the six-woman final, over France’s Marie Martinod (87.00).

“I couldn’t win at all this season,” Onozuka said. “It’s been a really difficult season so I’m glad I was able to win one in the end. I had the performance I wanted to have, and I can relax now.”

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