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Olympics: Ayumu Hirano fails as Australia wins men's skateboard park gold

Ayumu Hirano of Japan competes in the men's park skateboarding preliminaries at the 2020 Summer Olympics, on Aug. 5, 2021, in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Japanese dual Olympian Ayumu Hirano failed to make the final of the men's skateboard park event on Thursday, the two-time Olympic snowboard silver medalist finishing 14th overall.

    Australian Keegan Palmer became the first non-Japanese skateboard Olympic gold medalist when he scored a spectacular 95.83 points on his third and final run at Ariake Urban Sports Park in Tokyo Bay.

    The U.S.-born, Australia-raised 18-year-old scored the two highest totals of the day, opening his final with a 94.04 run that would have been enough for gold, too.

    "It's an absolute honor to skate with my friends. I can't believe I'm here in Tokyo for the Olympics, skating with so many of my best friends from when I was little. And now we're all on the podium together, and it's an absolute honor," said Palmer.

    Brazil's Pedro Barros finished in the silver position with 86.14 and Cory Juneau of the United States third, 2.01 points behind.

    Hirano hoped to add a skateboarding gold to his two snowboard halfpipe Olympic silver medals, won in 2014 and 2018, but could only record a best score of 62.03 on his second run, leaving him six places out of the final.

    "I enjoyed the experience," said Hirano. "This (Olympic) experience has made me stronger for sure. I was able to get through today without any regrets."

    Palmer's win brings the Tokyo Games skateboarding competition to a close.

    Japan finished with three gold medals -- won by Yuto Horigome and Momiji Nishiya in men's and women's street, respectively, and by Sakura Yosozumi in women's park -- as well as one silver and one bronze.

    Brazil got three silver medals, the United States two bronze and Britain claimed one bronze, won by half-Japanese park skater Sky Brown on Wednesday.

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