Hughes wins snowboarding silver for Australia

Jarryd Hughes has won silver for Australia in the men's snowboard cross at the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.

French world No.1 Pierre Vaultier claimed gold and Spaniard Regino Hernandez bronze, with Australian Alex Pullin crashing out in Thursday's final to place sixth.

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Hughes, the world No.9 who was out in the quarter-finals at Sochi in 2014, follows moguls skier Matt Graham (silver) and halfpipe snowboarder Scotty James (bronze) as Australian medallists at the Games.

The 22-year-old was the less-fancied of the two Australian finalists with Pullin ranked second in the world.

Carnage dominated the men's snowboard cross. Pic: Ch7

But he negotiated the course to be in a late three-way race for gold as other competitors crashed, making up ground on a runaway Vaultier in the dying stages as he narrowly held off Hernandez.

"Oh mate, it's happy days, happy happy days," he told the Seven Network.

"I think it hit me when I was there giving my mum and dad a hug, a few tears.

"I'm just happy to see all the hard work paying off and working out. It was a rough year but we made it work."

His form leading into the Games was inconsistent, with a World Cup gold medal in December followed by three results outside the top-20.

Two-time world champion Pullin improves on his quarter-final exit four years ago but failed to finish as he took a fall while getting air.

He and Hughes were one-two in the first semi-final.

Australian Cameron Bolton was last in the four-man small final to finish 10th overall.

He received heavy strapping tape to his arm before his final race after falling in the semis and was only able to push off with one hand.

Countryman Adam Lambert was out in the first round of finals after being clipped from behind by falling Andorran Lluis Marin Tarroch.

Olympic Athlete from Russia Nikolay Olyunin had to be stretchered off the course as a result of the carnage and the drama continued in the second semi as well.

Hughes was the first Aussie to progress to the semi-finals after coming in second place in the opening quarter-final.

The Australian was just behind French champion Vaultier.

Aussie pair Pullin and Bolton faced off against one another in the second quarter-final and both men booked their place in the semi-finals courtesy of a two-three finish respectively.

In a curious twist of fates, the three Australians were pitted against one another in the same semi-final by virtue of their runs in the quarters.

The fourth Australian in the finals, Adam Lambert, bowed out at the first stage after coming in fourth place.

There was no shortage of mayhem in the finals with several riders hitting the snow hard after spectacular crashes.

The third quarter-final was absolute carnage with four of the six competitors coming unstuck early on.

In the mad scramble to be the third and final man to qualify for the semi-finals, it was Canada's Christopher Robanske who prevailed out of the four men that crashed.

With AAP