Tour de France: Michael Matthews wins stage 16, Froome still in yellow | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 18.07.2017
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Tour de France: Michael Matthews wins stage 16, Froome still in yellow

Australian rider Michael Matthews won the sprint finish, denying Edvald Boasson Hagen and John Degenkolb. Chris Froome keeps the overall leader's yellow jersey; he and his three closest rivals crossed the line together.

The 165-kilometer (103-mile) ride from Le-Puy-en-Velay to Romans-sur-Isere ended in a veritable photo finish on Tuesday.

Australian Michael Matthews crossed the line less than half a bike's length ahead of Norwegian Edvald Boasson Hagen, with Germany's John Degenkolb just centimeters further back. Matthews, from Team Sunweb, triumphed on a stage where severe crosswinds in the closing phase disturbed and spread out the peloton.

Australia's Michael Matthews (2ndL) sprints to win ahead of Norway's Edvald Boasson Hagen (2ndR), Germany's John Degenkolb (L) and Belgium's Greg Van Avermaet (R) at the end of the 165 km sixteenth stage of the 104th edition of the Tour de France cycling race on July 18, 2017 between Le Puy-en-Velay and Romans-sur-Isere.

Matthews (second from left) won the sprint by the narrowest of margins

Tour de France stage 15: Bauke Mollema wins his first-ever stage, Froome leads

Overall leader Chris Froome managed to stick with the leading pack and therefore kept hold of the yellow jersey. His three closest challengers - Fabio Aru, Romain Bardet and Rigoberto Uran - were all able to keep pace and the leading quartet crossed the line together.

Tour de France 2017 | 14. Etappe Blagnac - Rodez (picture-alliance/dpa/BELGA/D. Stockman)

Yellow jersey holder Chris Froome has two tricky mountain stages to negotiate next

The race remains wide open as the Tour heads into the tricky alpine stages 17 and 18 - with just half a minute separating the top four riders. Froome's Team Sky teammate Mikel Landa is next in line, but 80 seconds behind.

Dan Martin, meanwhile, lost more than 50 seconds to the leaders, rolling in almost a minute adrift of Froome and friends. Martin drops to seventh in the standings, two minutes off the lead, as a result.

Tour de France stage 14: Matthews gets surprise win, Froome returns to the lead

msh (AP, Reuters)

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