Stephen Cummings celebrated Nelson Mandela Day in style for his South African team MTN-Qhubeka by taking an historic first Tour de France stage victory on Saturday. Qhubeka became the first ever African team to take part in the Tour this year and Briton Cummings gave them the breakthrough triumph on the 178.5km 14th stage from Rodez to Mende. The team has stayed calm and they kept confidence in me - they knew I could deliver Stephen Cummings And on a day in which Britain's Davis Cup tennis team took a 2-1 lead over France, Briton Cummings stole a march on a pair of Frenchmen to win the stage as compatriot Chris Froome retained the overall leader's yellow jersey. Former Team Sky rider Cummings was in tears at the end. He said: "The last few years I thought I was capable of doing this, I just needed to find the right team to get an opportunity. "The team has stayed calm and they kept confidence in me - they knew I could deliver. "With 3km to go I was riding fresh, [Thibaut Pinot and Romain Bardet] were full gas and I took advantage. "To be honest I wasn't thinking of the win, more the effort, and then I thought I had a chance. I threw caution to the wind." The stage victory looked to have come down to a battle between the two Frenchmen as Bardet attacked on the brutal final climb - 3km long at an average 10.1 per cent gradient - ahead of the finish. Pinot emerged from the remainder of a 20-man breakaway group to chase down his countryman but once he caught Bardet, the two started playing cat-and-mouse in the final kilometre. Cummings arrived like a freight train and blasted straight past the Frenchmen before taking off for the line. The Frenchman hesitated a second too long before deciding to chase and Cummings won by two seconds from Pinot, with Bardet another second further back. Five minutes further down the climb, the peloton and overall favourites arrived, where hostilities were launched by Nairo Quintana. Twice he accelerated clear with first reigning champion Vincenzo Nibali chasing him down. However, the second time only Froome could match the Colombian's pace and the Briton even snatched a second off Quintana in the sprint to the line. The Colombian did at least move up to second overall at three minutes, 10 seconds as Tejay Van Garderen had been dropped further down the climb and lost 40 seconds to sit third at 3:32. Spaniards Alberto Contador and Alejandro Valverde, as well as Nibali, all lost time to the lead pair as well. Valverde is fourth at 4:02 with Contador up a place to fifth at 4:23 and Nibali also up a place to eighth at 8:17.