Australia’s Michael Matthews claimed his first Tour de France stage victory in Revel on Tuesday with Chris Froome holding onto the leader’s yellow jersey.
Matthews’s Australian Orica team played the day’s breakaway to perfection as team-mates Luke Durbridge and Daryl Impey sacrificed themselves to help Matthews’s victory bid.
The 25-year-old pipped world champion Peter Sagan and Edvald Boasson Hagen of Norway at the end of the 184km 10th stage from Andorra to Revel.
Briton Froome kept atop the overall standings, the defending champion coming home in the labouring peloton almost 10 minutes after the stage winner.
Matthews was part of a six-man sprint finish in which Impey played a pivotal role, keeping the pace to the line high over the last 3km.
It allowed Matthews to tuck in behind Sagan and make the most of the Slovak’s slipstream to win the dash to the line.
He won comfortably enough to let go of his handlebars and lift his arms in celebration before even crossing the line.
It meant Matthews completed the full set of Grand Tour stage victories having won two at the Giro d”Italia and three at the Vuelta a Espana.
Sagan’s only consolation at finishing second on a Tour stage for the 17th time, against just five victories since 2012, was that he did enough to take back the sprinters’ green points jersey from Britain’s Mark Cavendish. – Agence France-Presse