Jose de Cauwer questions why INEOS didn't use the fact they had three riders in the top 10 to their advantage - "They completely assumed that Thomas would win"

Ultimately it was not to be for Geraint Thomas and the INEOS Grenadiers at the Giro d'Italia. Despite a strong team performance, they were unable to secure the Maglia Rosa. According to Jose de Cauwer, the tactics used by the team could've been much improved.

"I've said it before: they should have played more with their dominance in the standings," says de Cauwer in conversation with Karl Vannieuwkerke for Sporza. Despite the loss of Tao Geoghegan Hart, INEOS still had three riders in the top 10 throughout the third week of the race and it was Thymen Arensman in particular who could've been played as an attacking card in the opinion of de Cauwer. "If you see how Arensman was still riding around... They completely assumed that Thomas would win. And in the end, he loses."

For Primoz Roglic, this victory is sweet vindication. After the heartbreak of the 2020 Tour de France where he lost the Yellow Jersey in the final time-trial to Tadej Pogacar. "He has now seen both sides of the coin," de Cauwer says. "At one point it seemed that he would fail again, but when those last intermediate times came, it was clear. A sublime Roglic. The deserved winner."

With just 14 seconds between them, could Thomas still make a late move for the Maglia Rosa? Asks Vannieuwkerke. "No," de Cauwer replies. "You might expect that from a 21-year-old guy who still wants to move heaven and earth. But not from a 37-year-old Thomas. He has already drawn a line under it."

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