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Ayumu Hirano: Who is he, and can he beat Shaun White?

Unfortunately, a nasty dose of man-flu has prevented Japanese super-grom Ayumu Hirano from making an appearance at the X Games Tignes.

But you can bet that had he not been struck down, he’d be a medal contender tomorrow. Which is presumably why ESPN have put together this rather rad ‘Introduction to Ayumu’ edit.

It charts his path through what has surely been the most remarkable rookie season, well, ever. There’s a telling moment at about 2.25 where Shaun White talks about being scared of the pint-sized prodigy.

He may be joking but the truth is that Ayumu could be the man who finally steals Shaun’s crown. He’s certainly going about it the right way at the minute.

And while we’ll miss him at the X Games Tignes we have no doubt he’ll be back soon, riding better and bigger than ever.

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