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Cavendish pulls out of Tour de France after serious crash
Last Updated: 2017-07-05 00:00 | Xinhua
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Renowned British racer Mark Cavendish had to withdraw from this year's Tour de France due to his right shoulder blade fracture, hours after falling victim to a serious crash in the tournament's fourth stage final sprint.

"Mark Cavendish has been forced to withdraw from this year's Tour de France after fracturing his shoulder blade in the late crash on stage 4," his team Dimension Data announced late on Tuesday.

In a photo posted on Twitter, Cavendish was seen with his right arm in a sling.

As Cavendish tried to cross the finishing line on the right side with just 100m remaining, he was elbowed by Slovakian racer Peter Sagan, the stage winner a day earlier.

Cavendish could not hold his balance and fell onto the ground seriously, before tripping two other riders that followed him.

The medical staff ran in to give the three racers a quick treatment to help them finish the stage.

Cavendish was then taken to hospital for further medical check, and bad news did finally come for the 30-time stage winner.

"Obviously, I'm massively disappointed to get this news about the fracture," said Cavendish.

"I feel I was in a good position to win, but, to lose that and even having to leave the Tour, a race that I've built my whole career around, is really sad," he added.

Cavendish was pretty confused about Sagan's behaviour, especially as the two racers got on well.

"I just want to know about the elbow," he pointed out.

It was not the first time that Cavendish has suffered an early exit from the most prestigious road cycling tournament. In 2014, he had to bid farewell after suffering a collarbone fracture in the final sprint in the first stage.

Sagan was later disqualified by the race commission for causing a serious crash, and his results from the first four stages has been cleared out.

"We decided to disqualify Peter Sagan from the 2017 Tour de France because he endangered seriously several other riders including Mark Cavendish in the final meters of the sprint which happened in Vittel," announced president of the race commission Philippe Marien.

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