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Poland's Piotr Zyla ends 7-year ski jumping World Cup title drought

Piotr Zyla

Vienna, Feb 16 (UITV/IANS) - Piotr Zyla of Poland claimed his first men's ski jumping World Cup title in almost seven years as he won the season's first ski flying event in Bad Mitterndorf, Austria.

With jumps of 225.5 and 219.5 metres in the final, Zyla scored a total of 418.5 points to top the podium, only 0.3 points ahead of Slovenia's Timi Zajc. Local hero Stefan Kraft took third place with 414.6 points, reports Xinhua news agency.

German jumper Karl Geiger led after the first round with a 230-meter jump, but ultimately missed out on the podium, finishing fourth just 0.1 points behind Kraft.

Saturday's victory was Zyla's second World Cup win and his first in a ski flying event. The 33-year-old had endured a wait of almost seven years to stand atop the podium again, after having taken his first title in Oslo in 2013.

"It's been a while since my first win in Oslo. I didn't expect to win here today and I'm so happy now that I was able to finish top. I really like ski flying and today I felt really good physically and mentally," Zyla said.

Kraft remains top in the World Cup overall rankings with 1173 points, while Geiger has 1,095 points in second. Dawid Kubacki of Poland ranks third with 985 points.