Winter Olympics: Scotty James makes Pyeongchang snowboard halfpipe final

Winter Olympics: Scotty James makes Pyeongchang snowboard halfpipe final

Winter Olympics: Scotty James makes Pyeongchang snowboard halfpipe final

Updated 14 February 2018, 9:00 AEDT

Australian flagbearer Scotty James easily advances to the men's snowboard halfpipe final at the Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang, as Shaun White stakes a claim for a third gold medal.

Australian flagbearer Scotty James has easily advanced to the men's snowboard halfpipe final at the Olympic Winter Games in Pyeonchang, as Shaun White staked a claim for a third gold medal.

James, the 2017 world champion, simply went through the motions as he progressed to Wednesday's final, posting a score of 89.00 on his first run before completing qualifying with a 96.75 to be second on the overall standings.

American White, the 2006 and 2010 gold medallist, showed his class to top qualifying for the 12-man final with a best score of 98.50.

James' Australian teammate, Kent Callister, scraped through in 12th position with a best score of 77.00, while Nathan Johnstone (62.25) missed out.

James said he was satisfied with his opening performances, as he had not wanted to reveal too much in his qualifying runs.

"I've left a lot in the tank for tomorrow and I'm feeling really good in the pipe," he told Channel Seven.

"It's been riding well for us and I think it's going to be an awesome show tomorrow."

James briefly led during the second run, before White produced his best score of the day.

"That was our game plan today, I wanted to try and drop later in the field tomorrow for finals," James said.

"I assumed Shaun would answer back like that and that's competition."

The rivalry between James and White was simmering before last Friday's opening ceremony and is expected to hit fever pitch on Wednesday.

The 23-year-old Australian, who also won the 2015 world title and is taking part in his third Olympics, claimed last week he may have been "shafted" when it came to scoring in a recent competition, suggesting White had not deserved a perfect score at the Aspen Snowmass Grand Prix last month.

Earlier, Australia's Emily Arthur placed 11th in the women's halfpipe final in her Olympic debut, with American star Chloe Kim winning gold.