Remco Evenepoel (Soudal-Quickstep) clinched the UAE Tour overall victory 10 seconds behind Adam Yates (UAE Emirates) on Stage 7.
Evenepoel descended with 3km to go at the summit finish but he kept Yates within sight of him.
The world champion hoped to get close to Yates in the final kilometer, but he had to settle for second, 10 seconds behind the 30-year-old.
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Geoffrey Bouchard (AG2R Citroen) finished third; 42 seconds behind Yates.
“That was tough. I thought Yates was just going to stay on my wheel and jump the last few hundred meters and I would be happy with that,” Evenepoel said afterwards.
“But in the end, I had to go over the limit to keep up with him. I thought I was getting close to the finish, but at the end my legs gave up because we were going super fast on the climbs.”
Mikkel Bjerg, Marc Soler and Brandon McNulty made a quick start at the foot of the climb before Yates began his attack with about 6km remaining.
Evenepoel and Seb Kuss (Jumbo-Visma) followed, both in the lead, with Yates sitting behind them. Evenepoel took the lead over Kuss, but with 3km to go, Yates overtook the Belgian.
The pair worked their way to the finish, with Yates’ 16-second lead shrinking, but the Brit could hold on to the stage win.
Yates said: “The tactic was to go all out at the bottom. We had nothing to lose.
“After the crosswind stage, I was too far behind on the GC, we just have to go all out from the bottom and see what happens.
“The guys did a great job. I started attacking early on, but I knew I had to work really hard to get off these guys, and in the end I did.”
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