MUSCAT, Oman -- Tour de France runner-up Christopher Froome extended his overall lead in the Tour of Oman after holding off Alberto Contador and Oliver Joaquim Rodriguez to win the fifth stage on Friday.
Froome, a Team Sky rider who grabbed the lead after the fourth stage, finished the 89-mile trek from Al Alam Palace to Boshar in 3½ hours. Froome beat Team Saxo's Contador to the line. Katusha's Rodriguez, who won the fourth stage, also was edged out.
With one stage remaining, Froome leads Contador by 27 seconds overall. Former Tour winner Cadel Evans is a further 12 seconds back.
With about 16 miles left, Froome and Contador caught a breakaway group of nine riders. As they approached the third and final climb, Contador attacked first but couldn't shake Froome while Tony Gallopin and Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins dropped back. Contador, Rodriguez and Froome extended their lead on a group of seven.