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Germany takes opener at Nordic Combined World Cup

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KUUSAMO, Finland (AP) Johannes Rydzek of Germany was the strongest in a seven-man group to win the opening event Saturday at the Nordic Combined World Cup.

Rydzek beat Austria's Bernhard Gruber by one second, finishing the 10K skiing event in 25 minutes, 32.9 seconds.

Czech Miroslav Dvorak was in a good position for a while and was in line for his maiden win, but finished third, 6.1 seconds behind the 22-year-old Rydzek, the runner-up in the World Cup overall last season.

Olympic silver medalist Akita Watabe of Japan was fourth, and Olympic winner Jorgen Graabak of Norway finished fifth after rising from 25th place after the ski jump.