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Mathieu van der Poel speaks out about Australian incident: “I should have acted differently”

Dutch news reports to have seen videos of the altercation

Mathieu Van Der Poel abandaons Tour de France

Mathieu van der Poel has spoken after the incident involving two teenage girls which resulted in a disastrous evening for him the eve of the men’s road race at the World Championships in Wollongong, Australia. The Tour de France stage winner would spend the wee hours of the morning at the police station after the altercation.

Mathieu van der Poel pleads guilty to assault of girls night before world championships

MvdP was fined 1,500 AUD for the altercation, which occurred following the girls repeatedly knocking on his door.
During the incident, according to the Dutch news outlet AD the conversation was as follows:

MvdP: “I didn’t touch anybody.”
The girls’ mother: “Shut up, it’s on camera.”
MvdP: “Show me, no problem.”
Mother: “You are not allowed in my room.”
MvdP: “You are not allowed to knock my door for three fucking hours.”
Mother: “You threatened us.”
MvdP: “Then call the police and tell them about this.”
Mother: “I already did. They are on their way.”
Mvdp: “Fine, are you sure?”

“That’s what I said, I held a girl by the arm, certainly not with the intention of hurting anyone,” Van der Poel after Dutch news revealed they had seen video footage of the hotel incident. “Anyone who knows me knows that I have never hurt anyone. There are a lot of stories going around about pushing and stuff. That is absolutely not true. Not what happened.”

Although van der Poel pleaded guilty in court on Tuesday, he says there is more to the night in question.

“There are two sides to a story and being in Australia it’s hard to deal with. I definitely regret it. I’m wrong, I admit that. I shouldn’t have done that, I should have acted differently,” he said. “Unfortunately it happened. I try to put it behind me and see what comes next. Now I go home, get some peace and quiet, I’m very happy to be back. Now the team and the lawyer will deal with it.”

New South Wales police released a statement confirming that an incident took place at 10:30 p.m. and that they had arrested a 27-year-old man.

One of the favourites for the road race, van der Poel would quit the race after just 25 km.

When reporters asked him at the Brusssels airport why he didn’t call security, he said he was frustrated and tired.

“It was late and I wanted to sleep,”  van der Poel said when asked why he didn’t call for security. “I thought I could fix it myself, which went completely wrong. Unfortunately, I can’t change it any more.”
Van der Poel’s lawyer has said they will appeal the conviction.