Shiffrin finishes second on return after 10-month absence

Levi (Finland) (AFP) –

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US ski star Mikaela Shiffrin shrugged off a near 10-month absence to finish second behind Petra Vlhova in the World Cup slalom at Levi in Finland on Saturday.

The three-time overall World Cup winner was all set for a fourth consecutive overall World Cup title when she ended last season abruptly after the sudden death of her father.

A bad back then forced her to skip the season-opener in Soelden.

Shiffrin was just 15 hundredths of a second behind Slovakia'a Vlhova in the first run.

Vlhova, who won gold in the giant slalom at the world championships in Are last year, was quickest again in the second run to finish 0.18 seconds ahead of Shiffrin overall and secure her 15th World Cup victory.

Behind the two favourites came Austrian Katharina Liensberger who finished 0.57 seconds beind Vlhova.