Van der Poel abandons World Championships road race, 'mentally broken' following arrest

By Sports Desk September 25, 2022

Mathieu van der Poel abandoned the UCI Road World Championships on Sunday after he was left "mentally broken" from being arrested in Sydney.

The Dutchman was charged with two counts of common assault at Kogarah Police Station following an alleged incident involving two teenage girls at a hotel on Saturday evening.

Van der Poel was granted conditional bail by New South Wales Police and will appear at Sutherland Local Court on Tuesday.

The 27-year-old had been among the favourites to be crowned world champion in Wollongong, but withdrew with 230 kilometres to go after revealing he only got back to his hotel from the police station at 4am.

Christoph Roodhooft, boss of the Alpecin-Deceuninck team Van der Poul rides for, said: "It was really unexpected. Obviously there were children bouncing at his door [in the hotel] and after the third he was p***** off with them. He went out and it seemed like it was children, teenagers, and someone called the police and they asked him to go to give an explanation.

"He was asked by the police to tell them what happened, then he could sign [papers] and then he could go. There were children in the corridor playing and he went out to ask them to stop but obviously not in the right way."

Roodhooft added of Van der Poel's withdrawal from the race: "We didn't talk about the situation, but sporting wise he was really disappointed. He didn't sleep all night and mentally he was a bit broken. He was expecting a lot from today and he did everything he could in the last two months after his bad Tour de France. He found joy and happiness again in cycling and was hoping for a nice race again."

Prior to the start of the race, Van der Poel explained what had occurred the night before.

He told Sporza: "It's true, yes. There was a small dispute. It was about noisy neighbours and they are quite strict here. I went to bed early and many children in the hallway of my room found it necessary to knock on the door continuously.

"After a few times, I was done with it. I didn't ask so nicely to stop. Then the police were called, and I was taken. I wasn't back in my room until four o'clock."

NSW Police said in a statement: "About 10.40pm (Saturday 24 September 2022), a 27-year-old man was at a hotel on The Grand Parade, Brighton-Le-Sands, when he was allegedly involved in a verbal altercation with two teenage girls – aged 13 and 14.

"It's further alleged the man then pushed both teenagers, with one falling to the ground and the other being pushed into a wall causing a minor graze to her elbow.

"Officers from St George Police Area Command attended and arrested a 27-year-old man shortly after. He was taken to Kogarah Police Station and charged with two counts of common assault.

"He was granted conditional bail to appear at Sutherland Local Court on Tuesday 27 September 2022."

Related items

  • Murray fumes at umpire amid severe weather at Geneva Open Murray fumes at umpire amid severe weather at Geneva Open

    Andy Murray fumed at the umpire as inclement weather forced his Geneva Open tie with Yannick Hanfmann to be suspended.

    Murray's meeting with Hanfmann was postponed with the Scot a set and a double break down, with his German opponent in control at 7-5 4-1.

    Former world number one Murray was furious with umpire Greg Allensworth as the weather closed in.

    "I know you guys don't play but it'd be good to have a bit of a feel for what's happening," said Murray during a break in play.

    "You're fine for us to play when there's s*** flying around?

    "It's like it's snowing out here and you still want us to keep going."

    Allensworth eventually sent the players into the dressing rooms.

    Murray is aiming to use the Geneva Open to prepare for what is set to be his first French Open appearance since 2020.

    A tie with Novak Djokovic is on the cards if Murray can turn things around on Tuesday, though it looks incredibly unlikely.

  • 'It's a joke' – Ten Hag slams reports of Man Utd fire sale 'It's a joke' – Ten Hag slams reports of Man Utd fire sale

    Erik ten Hag has angrily denied reports claiming almost every player in Manchester United's squad will be up for sale in the upcoming transfer window, describing them as "a joke".

    United are officially out of the running for Champions League qualification and could yet end Ten Hag's second season at the helm out of Europe entirely, with Newcastle United and Chelsea among the teams looking to hunt down the sixth-placed Red Devils.

    Big changes are expected in United's first transfer window under the stewardship of INEOS founder Jim Ratcliffe, who assumed full control of football operations when his purchase of a minority stake in the club was ratified in February. 

    Earlier this week, reports emerged suggesting United were entertaining offers for all but three of their players, namely Rasmus Hojlund, Alejandro Garnacho and Kobbie Mainoo.

    Speaking at a press conference to preview Monday's Premier League trip to Crystal Palace, Ten Hag shot down those suggestions.

    "It's a joke! As long as I worked here, 200 players are apparently getting interest from Manchester United every summer, which is untrue. We did some research," Ten Hag said.

    "Every summer, we sell every player in our squad, which is untrue. Be calm and take responsibility when you make up such a headline. It is total c**p."

    Despite coming under fierce pressure this campaign, Ten Hag has repeatedly insisted he will remain at Old Trafford for the 2024-25 season.

    He knows there is plenty to be done as the Red Devils enter a new era, saying: "There's always a lot of work, that's normal when you go into a transfer window. 

    "We are still below the levels of the expectations that Manchester United have, so we have to catch up.

    "I am now going into my fifth window, two windows were okay, two windows we did nothing. We have to make new improvements in the summer. 

    "There is a base of this squad that is very good. Injuries had a big impact on our season."

  • 'It's playoff basketball' – Tatum unfazed by physical nature of Celtics-Heat battle 'It's playoff basketball' – Tatum unfazed by physical nature of Celtics-Heat battle

    Jayson Tatum showed he was unfazed by the Miami Heat's physicality as he logged his first career playoff triple-double in the Boston Celtics' 114-94 Game 1 victory on Sunday.

    Top-seeded Boston seized the initiative in their first-round series against Miami at TD Garden, with Tatum adding 10 rebounds and 10 assists to his 23 points, leading six Celtics in double figures.

    Tatum's fine performance came despite some rough treatment from the Heat, taking one huge hit from Caleb Martin while going up for a rebound in the last minute of the fourth quarter.

    Martin immediately went to help Tatum up but was pushed by Boston's Jaylen Brown, with both players awarded technicals. The Miami forward later said the incident was accidental, as he received a slight nudge from Jrue Holiday before crashing into Tatum.

    The five-star All-Star was soon back to his feet, though, and he later said getting hit was just part of the game. 

    "It's playoff basketball, and it's a physical game against a physical team. ***'s going to happen," Tatum said. "It's probably not the last time I'm going to get hit like that in this series.

    The Celtics led by as many as 34 points in the fourth quarter, with a late run from the Heat only ever bringing them as close as 14. 

    Tatum hailed Boston for staying focused throughout, adding: "It's supposed to be tough. In the playoffs no game is easy. 

    "There are no guaranteed wins regardless of the score, or how much time is left. We just had to respond and we did that."

    Miami struggled in the absence of Jimmy Butler, and coach Erik Spoelstra accepted they were second-best, saying: "Boston controlled this game from the tip. 

    "They won the big muscle areas. They definitely won the 3-point line and the majority of the areas in between."

    Elsewhere on Sunday, Milwaukee Bucks star Damian Lillard scored 35 first-half points – a franchise playoff record – as they claimed a 109-94 victory over the Indiana Pacers in Game 1 of their own first-round series.

    Lillard didn't score after halftime, but his lightning start ensured the Bucks were untroubled despite the absence of two-time NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo, who missed out with a calf strain. 

    Milwaukee built a commanding 69-42 lead by the interval and never saw their advantage drop to single digits as Khris Middleton tacked on 23 points – 15 of them in the second half.

    Looking ahead to Tuesday's second game, which will also be held at the home of the third-seeded Bucks, Lillard said: "In the playoffs, it's about setting the tone.

    "We're going to see this team a lot of times, and you want to establish yourself, especially on your home floor. That was my mentality, to come out and try and set the tone in that way."

    Remarking on Lillard's incredible first-half performance, Milwaukee coach Doc Rivers said: "He carried us. He was unbelievable."

    Over the course of four quarters, Lillard was upstaged by Indiana's Pascal Siakam, who finished with 36 points and 13 rebounds in 40 minutes on the court.

    Indiana head coach Rick Carlisle, however, was unable to look beyond their miserable start to the game.

    "The first half was embarrassing," Carlisle said. "We have no excuses. We've simply got to come out better. It was ugly, and we all own it."

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.