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Denmark's Asgreen wins stage three in Germany as Stuyven takes lead

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Eisenach (Germany) (AFP)

Kasper Asgreen claimed victory on the third and penultimate stage of the Tour of Germany in Eisenach on Saturday as Belgian Jasper Stuyven grabbed the overall lead.

Denmark's Asgreen, who won the Tour of California in May, edged out Stuyven after the pair had broken clear near the end of the 189km ride from Goettingen.

The Deceuninck Quick-Step man and Trek-Segafredo's Stuyven finished 17 seconds ahead of a group of 15 riders.

Frenchman Julian Alaphilippe, who thrilled the home crowds at the Tour de France before finishing fifth last month, led for long periods on Saturday with Mads Pedersen before the duo were caught 25km from the finish.

Stuyven now leads Italian Sonny Colbrelli by 13 seconds in the overall standings and now looks set to take victory, ahead of bigger names including former Tour de France champions Geraint Thomas and Vincenzo Nibali.

"We protected Jasper as much as we could on the penultimate climb and then he was in the 25-rider group to get in with Asgreen," said Stuyven's teammate Julien Bernard.

"For tomorrow, it's going to be a big fight."

Sunday's final stage keeps the peloton in the Thuringian forest with an undulating course to Erfurt.

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