Tour de France

Matthews admits sleeping in green jersey

2017-07-21 22:57
Michael Matthews (AP)

Salon-de-Provence - Michael Matthews was so happy to be holding the sprinters' green jersey at the Tour de France that he even slept in at.

The Australian sewed up victory in the green jersey competition on Friday, although he had already done so all but mathematically on Thursday.

"I did (sleep in it) but it got bit hot in the middle of the night so I had to take it off," said the 26-year-old, whose room-mate from his Sunweb team is Frenchman Warren Bardet, the winner of the king of the mountains polkadot jersey.

"I don't think Warren was wearing his to bed, maybe I'm just a little bit weird," joked Matthews after Friday's 222.5km 19th stage.

The room-mates have enjoyed a sensational Tour, both winning two individual stages and securing a coveted jersey outright too.

It has been so exiting that they've barely been able to get some rest.

"The last two nights really since I got the jersey, I really couldn't sleep," said Matthews.

"Maybe it affected my performance these last two days. All our dreams came true and our team-mates, their dreams came true as well.

"It's something we worked so hard for. To come in biggest race is special."

Barguil added: "This morning we woke up pretty early because we couldn't sleep.

"We discussed a lot about our dream because we have the same dream together.

"It's crazy, we're smiling, we're so happy - it's normal I think!"

The Tour didn't start so well for either Matthews or Barguil, but over the last week they have been on fire.

It began with Barguil claiming the polkadot jersey on stage nine and then winning the 13th stage on Bastille Day, France's national holiday.

Matthews won the 14th and 16th stages and when German sprinter Marcel Kittle, who had already won five stages, pulled out of the 17th stage following a crash, the Australian inherited the green jersey.

The very next day, Barguil won the 18th stage and secured victory in the mountains competition while Matthews had to wait an extra day to mathematically sew up the points competition.

"I'm in the best form of my life," said Barguil, who had previously won two Grand Tour stages at the 2013 Vuelta a Espana.

And he said it was in part due to an injury suffered in April that disrupted his season.

"I think it's because I'm fresh," he said. "It makes a big difference - a lot of guys arrive tired, I arrived fresh and I'm just riding my bike.

"It cannot be better, that's for sure."

Read more on:    tdf 2017  |  michael matthews  |  cycling


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