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

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Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) won the opening 9.7km time trial in the Giro d'Italia, edging out Rohan Dennis (BMC) by two seconds. "To have the win and time on the other GC guys is a pefect start for me and the team." said Dumoulin.

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 third fastest man on a warm and sticky day was Belgium's Victor Campenaerts, only a fraction of a second slower than Dennis, with Portugal's Jose Goncalves fourth, 12 seconds back.

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Riding in the rainbow jersey as world time trial champion, the defending champion put significant time into many of his rivals at the earliest opportunity.

The Giro d'Italia is the only Grand Tour title that has eluded Froome, who is under increased scrutiny as the UCI, cycling's world governing body, investigates his adverse analytical finding during his Vuelta a Espana triumph previous year. "It was a very challenging, very technical course but for me it was okay". The British lost Dumoulin 37 seconds and completed the first stage only on the 21st place.

The 167-kilometre second stage on Saturday (Sunday NZT) will whizz down the Mediterranean coast from Haifa to Tel Aviv.

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