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Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Contador keeps Basque lead, Matthews wins stage

Associated Press

VITORIA, Spain -- Alberto Contador maintained his overall grip on the Tour of the Basque Country on Wednesday, while Australian cyclist Michael Matthews won the long third stage in northern Spain.

Matthews took advantage of smart work by his Orica-GreenEdge team to beat Kevin Reza of Europcar and Michal Kwiatkowski of Omega Pharma-Quick-Step. Matthews covered the 194.7 kilometers (121 miles) in 5 hours, 2 minutes, 9 seconds.

Contador stayed with the peloton to maintain his 14-second lead over fellow Spaniard Alejandro Valverde. Contador, of Tinkoff-Saxo, has an overall time of 12:54:03.

The five-stage race could be all but decided on Thursday, with a summit finish closing a difficult fourth leg featuring five categorized climbs.