SPORTS

Italy's Modolo Wins Opening Stage Of Tour Of Croatia

Italy's Sacha Modolo took the first stage win of the 2017 tour of Croatia in a bunch sprint at the finish in Koprivnica.

The 227 kilometer stage ran from Osijek to Koprivnica with a category three climb within the final 20kms.

A group of five breakaway riders led by over two minutes approaching the climb to Ludbreg but they fragmented during the climb with Russia's Nikolai Trusov of Gazprom-Rusvelo over the top first, chased by Ireland's Michael O'loughlin of team Wiggins and Nippo-Vini Fantini's Marco canola of Italy.

They regrouped after the descent but were caught by the relentless pace of the peloton just under 11kms from the finish.

Modolo was well placed to take advantage of the slight left-hand bend before the finish, and he crossed the line first.

Second was Romania's Eduard Grosu for Nippo-Vini Fantini, the Romanian banging his bicycle handlebars in anger at losing the win.

Third was Nicolas Marini of Italy, also for Nippo.