Polish star ski jumper and Olympic dark horse Adam Małysz confirmed his return to form on Saturday on the normal hill in Vancouver, earning a silver medal. He was edged out only by World Cup leader Simon Ammann, whose final jump of 108 meters closed out the contest and denied Małysz his first taste of Olympic gold. The 32-year-old Małysz took a silver and a bronze in Salt Lake City in 2002. “The Eagle of Wisła” had fallen from the forefront of the world of ski jumping in recent seasons, only to surge ahead in recent weeks, taking second in an event in Klingenthal on 3 February.
Małysz graciously praised his rival, Ammann, saying that he “has built up such a head of steam, that he’s tough to keep up with” and “he’s jumping fantastically”. About his silver medal, Małysz told reporters: “This is a great experience. To be on the Olympic podium is an amazing thing. My heart was pounding. The moment was thrilling and my personal satisfaction was tremendous. I got back onto the podium after eight years.”
Małysz will be competing again on Saturday, 19 February in the large hill event and Monday, 22 February in the team competition.
See also: Poland’s Olympic Hopefuls.