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Tom Dumoulin to battle Chris Froome in defence of Giro d'Italia title

Joe Robinson
1 Dec 2017

Tom Dumoulin is set to defend his Giro d'Italia title next May according to reports

Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) is likely to defend his Giro d'Italia title next May despite many believing he will race the Tour de France in 2018 instead.

In Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport earlier this week, it was reported that the time trial World Champion will confirm his attendance at the Giro in January.

The same newspaper also suggested today that there would be a 100 per cent chance of Dumoulin starting the race in Jerusalem, Israel alongside Chris Froome (Team Sky) and Fabio Aru (UAE-Team Emirates).

Various reports have also suggested that twice winner of the race Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) is shying away from the race, with his preference now being the Tour de France.

It was widely believed that Dutchman Dumoulin would focus on the Tour for 2018, in his first bid at overall success in France.

However, with a route announced that lacks any particularly tough mountains and a long time trial, Dumoulin may be tempted into a title defence.

Dumoulin's attendance at the Giro does not rule him out of racing the Tour but it is unlikely that he will go head-to-head with Froome in an attempt at the Giro-Tour double.

On the route announcement on Wednesday, Dumoulin gave nothing away regarding his race programme for 2018.

'I know already but I'm not going to tell you,' Dumoulin stated about next season.

Dumoulin managed to take his first pink jersey this year, clawing ahead of Nairo Quintana (Movistar) on the final stage time trial into Milan.

It is expected that Dumoulin will announce his decision at the Team Sunweb team launch on 4th January 2018 in Berlin, Germany.