Ski Jumping - Ammann wins Four Hills opener in Oberstdorf

Simon Ammann laid claim to the one major ski jumping title missing from his career after securing his first win in nearly three years as the Four Hills Tournament began in Oberstdorf.

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Simon Ammann celebrates his Four Hills victory at Oberstdorf (Reuters)

Ammann has a fine list of achievements including four Olympic gold medals, a World Cup title, an individual large hill world title and a ski flying global crown but he's never won the Four Hills.

However the 32-year-old is in the right type of form to end his wait for the crown after beating Anders Bardal, the winner of the qualification round in Oberstdorf, to the opening win.

He leapt 139m and 133m for an overall winning total of 301.9 points with Norwegian World Cup champion from the 2011-12 season Bardal placing second with 297.9.

The win was Ammann's 21st on the World Cup circuit and third at the Four Hills Tournament but his first since March 2011 when the Swiss jumper soared to first place in Lahti.

He started in the same fashion in 2008-09 in Oberstdorf only to finish second overall behind Wolfgang Loitzl while he was to be the runner-up the second time he claimed a win in 2010-11.

Only Slovenian Peter Prevc leapt further than Ammann in the first round but he followed a 139.5m with a 134m to tie for third place with Austrian Thomas Diethart on 297.3 points.

Fellow Austrian Thomas Morgenstern, who crashed in Germany on December 15, was fifth while defending two-time Four Hills champion Gregor Schlierenzauer had to make do with ninth.

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