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YMichael Matthews soloed to victory on the 14th stage of the Tour de France when defending champion Tadej Pogacar tried in vain to regain time on leader Jonas Vingegaard.
Matthews’ fourth stage win came five years after the Australian last tasted victory in France. He has also twice finished second at this year’s Tour, on stages six and eight.
The one-day classic specialist was in a group of 23 riders who broke from the pack after a frenetic start to the stage punctuated by a flurry of attacks on the hilly ground from Saint-Etienne to Mende.
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READ MORE: Aussie Smith has day to forget as British Open favourite surges Michael Matthews of Team BikeExchange-Jayco celebrates winning Stage 14 of the Tour de France. (Getty) After spending the day at the front of the race, Matthews looked like he was about to crack when he was caught by Italian Alberto Bettiol on the last climb, but his grit helped him stay in contention and launch a counterattack that paid off.
“Matthews put on a show. He has days like that when he is very strong," French rider Thibaut Pinot, who completed the stage podium behind Matthews and Bettiol, said.“He really amazes me. Doing the sprints he does, and climbing like he does, in his field, he is the best." With its constant ups and downs, the stage profile through the Massif Central was ideal for a breakaway. Not […]