Injury forces Sam Bennett out...


Injury forces Sam Bennett out of this year's Tour de France

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Sam Bennett will miss this year's Tour de France. 

Last year's green jersey winner has been omitted from the Deceuninck Quick-Step team, having failed to recover in time from a knee injury.

His place on the team goes instead to Mark Cavendish.

The Manx sprinter replaced Bennett on the recent Tour of Belgium, and it had been hoped the Carrick-on-Suir rider had done enough to prove his fitness.

However, Bennett will be unable to defend the green jersey he won in Paris last year.

"Needless to say, I’m very disappointed to not be able to defend my green jersey at this year’s Tour de France," Bennett said.

"I had a very minor incident during training a couple of weeks ago, which effected my knee.

"While the injury I sustained is very short-term, it impacted my training for the biggest bike race in the world all too much and left me without enough time to be race fit.

"Le Tour deserves me at my best and it would do my team, and myself, an injustice to race in my current condition. I wish the whole Wolfpack a successful three weeks on the road of France”

This year's race begins with the Grand Départ in Brest on Saturday, with world champion Julian Alaphilippe leading their efforts.

"I am delighted to be going back to the Tour de France with Deceuninck Quick-Step," said Cavendish.

"Obviously, the circumstances with Sam could be better – he had a special Tour last year and I am sad for him not being able to defend his green jersey.

"But at the same time, I am excited to be going back to a race that I have such an affinity with and where I have so much history.

"It is the biggest bike race in the world, and I am going to do all I can to grab this opportunity with both hands”

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Cycling Julian Alaphilippe Mark Cavendish Sam Bennett Tour De France

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