Dennis was five seconds down at the intermediate split but rallied to take the win by a split second over Bodnar, with fellow Australian Matthews a second in arrears.
Today it was a hard one," said Dennis, 'it was quite a mental battle for me because in the last months my results they were very far away from what I expected”.
2019 has been a tough one for the world champion to date, losing his stranglehold national championships individual time trial to Luke Durbridge (Mitchelton-Scott) and not looking his normal dominant self as he finished 8th and 22nd in the Tirreno and Pais Vasco time trials respectively.
“Finally, today I made it and it’s a great feeling to be back on that top step," said Dennis. "Tomorrow I will be in yellow jersey and I will do my best to defend it.
'The penultimate stage will be another ITT and I feel confident to repeat today's performance. And then there is the Tour de France I’m looking forward to it.”
Matthews looks likely to battle it out with Peter Sagan for the race lead on Stage 2, with the hilly stage featuring a slight uphill finish that looks to suit that type of rider.