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A result that looked out of reach less than a week ago has turned out to be more than reality for the Australian Team Sunweb rider Michael Matthews.
Marcel Kittel (Quick-Step Flooring) looked to have more than just a strong-hold on the sort-after Green Jersey until he came down in a fall on stage 17.
The crash forced the German to withdraw from the Tour due to injury, in-turn offering the chance of a lifetime for Matthews to take over the Jersey.
But lets not take away the fact that Matthews was closing in on the points tally of Kittel. The battle for Green may very well have come down to a battle on the final stage, but as history will now show, Matthews will join the likes of Robbie McEwan and Baden Cooke as Australians to win the Green ‘Points’ Jersey.
The final run into the finish on the Champs-Elysees in Paris was always going to be a battle of the fast men and with what looked like a reasonably straight forward run to the line, it was The Lotto NL- Jumbo rider Dylan Groenewegen who took the win ahead of the pre-stage favourite, German Lotto-Soudal rider Andre Greipel and Edvald Boasson Hagen from the Dimension Data team.
Matthews finished back in a safe 11th position but finished the Tour with a total of 370 points in the Points section, 136 more than second placed Greipel with Boasson Hagen a further 14 points back in third.
Team Sky’s Chris Froome secured his fourth Tour de France win with an outstanding individual time trial on stage 20 where he was able to extend his time over his closest rivals, Rigoberto Uran (Cannondale-Drapac) and the popular Frenchman, Romain Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale).
Earlier race favourites, Fabio Aru (Astana Pro Team) Daniel Martin (Quick-Step Flooring) and Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo) all dropped away over the final week to finish well back on Froome but still securing top 10 placings.
Other riders of note results –
11. Michael Matthews – Team Sunweb
18. Jack Bauer NZ – Quick-Step Flooring
26. Jay McCarthy – Bora – Hansgrohe
37. Patrick Bevin NZ – Cannondale- Drapac
46. Simon Clarke – Cannondale – Drapac
77. Damien Howson – Orica Scott
96. Adam Hansen – Lotto Soudal
124. Dion Smith NZ – Wanty – Groupe Gobert
137. Mathew Hayman – Orica Scott
69. Michael Matthews – Team Sunweb
86. Simon Clarke – Cannondale- Drapac
88. Damien Howson – Orica Scott
94. Jay McCarthy – Bora-Hansgrohe
105. Jack Bauer NZ – Quick-Step Flooring
113. Adam Hansen – Lotto Soudal
114. Patrick Bevin NZ – Cannondale – Drapac
124. Dion Smith – NZ – Wanty – Groupe Gobert
151. Mathew Hayman – Orica Scott