Hamilton appeared to be on the back foot after struggling with understeer throughout Q3 but the seven-time world champion went fastest on his final lap to secure back-to-back poles. 

Teammate Valtteri Bottas improved to ensure a Mercedes 1-2 at the end, though Verstappen was going even faster than his rivals on his last flying effort and looked set to snatch pole. 

The Red Bull driver was already over two-tenths up on Hamilton’s benchmark though the first two sectors but locked up at the final corner and tagged the outside wall, ending his session early.

It prevented Verstappen from challenging his championship rival for pole, leaving the Dutchman only third behind the Mercedes pair. 

There will be concern as to whether Verstappen has suffered damage to his gearbox in the crash, with any change ahead of the race incurring a five-place grid penalty. 

To add insult to injury, Charles Leclerc managed to split the Red Bull drivers by putting his Ferrari an impressive fourth, ahead of Sergio Perez

AlphaTauri's Pierre Gasly continued his excellent qualifying form to outpace Lando Norris's McLaren to grab seventh, while his teammate Yuki Tsunoda was eighth.

Esteban Ocon and Antonio Giovinazzi completed the top-10 for Alpine and Alfa Romeo.

Daniel Ricciardo was just shy of joining his McLaren teammate in the top-10 as he finished 11th, ahead of Alfa Romeo’s Kimi Raikkonen, who made light contact with Bottas’ Mercedes right at the end of Q2. 

Two-time world champion Fernando Alonso could only put his Alpine 13th, one tenth clear of George Russell who secured his latest Q2 appearance for Williams.

The biggest shock of the second session saw Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz knocked out in a disappointing 15th following two big sideways moments.  

Sainz escaped a high-speed spin at Turn 10 with minor rear wing damage after clipping the wall at the exit of the corner, before having another wide moment on his final run. 

Williams driver Nicholas Latifi was 16th while Aston Martin endured a shocker of a qualifying as Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll were both eliminated in Q1 in 17th and 18th. 

Mick Schumacher produced a strong lap to get within a tenth of Stroll as he comfortably out-qualified his Haas teammate Nikita Mazepin despite not turning on his DRS.