Froome falters after fall as Giro d'Italia begins in Jerusalem

Jerusalem is set to stage the Big Start of the Giro d'Italia amid controversy

It was hardly an ideal start for Froome, who is facing a potential doping ban after a urine sample he provided at the Spanish Vuelta in September showed a concentration of the asthma drug salbutamol that was twice the permitted level.

"The negotiations with Team Sky took place before the Giro presentation so, within a correct relationship, I would have expected to be informed - so I really didn't like this", said Vengi.

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Dennis then held his breath further as Froome and defending champion Dumoulin rolled off of the start ramp.

Further down the field were Irish duo Nicolas Roche and Sam Bennett - 74 and 79 seconds slower than Dumoulin, respectively.

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Dumoulin finished two seconds ahead of Rohan Dennis.

Froome was filmed limping after the crash, but he got back on his bike and rode to the Team Sky base to be assessed by team doctors. "It was a very challenging, very technical course but for me it was okay". Stage 3 will follow a lengthy, 229-kilometre route - the second-longest leg of the entire race - from Beersheba in the Negev desert down to Israel's southern tip of Eilat along the Red Sea.

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And the fact that a trio of climbers - New Zealand's George Bennett, Italian Fabio Aru and Colombian Miguel Angel Lopez - who also crashed whilst checking the course, are only just behind would not have been part of the plan.

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