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Tour of Britain: Wout Poels wins as Edvald Boasson Hagen takes lead

Wouter Poels wins Stage 4 of the 2015 Tirreno-Adriatico
Image: Wout Poels won stage five of the Tour of Britain but missed out on the race lead

Team Sky's Wout Poels won stage five of the Aviva Tour of Britain but was denied the overall lead by runner-up Edvald Boasson Hagen.

Poels looked beaten with 500m left of the 7.8km climb to the day's summit finish on Hartside in the Pennines, but he then found a second wind to overtake Boasson Hagen (MTN-Qhubeka) with 125m to go.

He finished two seconds in front of the Norwegian and picked up 10 bonus seconds, but Boasson Hagen claimed six bonus seconds and that was enough to send him to the top of the general classification, one second ahead of second-placed Poels.

Poels said: "It was really nice. The team worked really hard. It was close with Boasson Hagen - he was really strong - but it was a really nice win. It's nice now that I ride for Team Sky and there is a home race in the UK. There are really people here, so it is really nice to win.

"This is my second victory on the Tour of Britain. In 2010, it was my second victory as a pro. Hopefully we can take the [yellow] jersey, but it will be difficult, but we still have three days left."

Stage five's summit finish always looked likely to have a significant bearing on the overall result, and that suspicion was borne out by the urgency of the attacks and counter-attacks which began almost as soon as the peloton hit the line marking the start of the final climb.

Peter Kennaugh (Team Sky) briefly looked a potential winner when he surged ahead of the peloton, but he was overhauled following an attack from LottoNL-Jumbo's Steven Kruijswijk and it was left to Poels to chase his fellow Dutchman with around 3.5km of the climb remaining.

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Boasson Hagen, who began the day seven seconds clear of Poels in second, sensed the danger and soon made it a three-man leading group as both he and his rival for yellow attacked time and again in the closing stages.

The Norwegian appeared to have broken Poels' spirit as he kicked for home into a headwind at the 1km-to-go mark, but the Dutchman timed his last burst to perfection to give Team Sky a third stage win of this year's race.

Boasson Hagen said: "I just had to follow the moves at the start of the climb, and then I wanted to try to gain some seconds and I tried to attack before 1km [to go], but I had to pay for it in the headwind and then Wout came too strong from behind. So I lost the stage victory there, but I have the GC now, so I am happy."

The race continues on Friday with a 192.7km sixth stage from Stoke-on-Trent to Nottingham. Follow the action with our live blog from 2pm.

Stage five result

1 Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky, 4:12:22

2 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN-Qhubeka, +2

3 Benat Intxausti (Esp) Movistar +17

4 Zdenek Stybar (Cze), Etixx-Quick-Step +18

5 Rasmus Gulhammer (Den) Cult Energy, same time

6 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo, st

7 Xandro Meurisse (Bel) An Post Chain Reaction, st

8 Chris Anker Sorensen (Den), Tinkoff-Saxo, st

9 Ruben Fernandez (Esp) Movistar, st

10 Dylan Teuns (Bel) BMC-Racing, +38

General classification

1 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) MTN-Qhubeka, 23:02:36

2 Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky, +1

3 Rasmus Gulhammer (Den) Cult Energy, +30

4 Benat Intxausti (Esp) Movistar +33

5 Owain Doull (GB) WIGGINS, +37

6 Dylan Teuns (Bel) BMC-Racing, +38

7 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Etixx-Quick-Step, same time

8 Ruben Fernandez (Esp) Movistar, st

9 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo, st

10 Chris Anker Sorensen (Den) Tinkoff-Saxo, st

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