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Cavendish 'devastated' after pulling out of Tour

ESPN staff
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Mark Cavendish said he knew his injuries were serious after crashing at the end of stage one © PA Photos
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Mark Cavendish has spoken of his devastation at having to pull out of the Tour de France after he suffered a dislocated shoulder and ligament damage in a crash at the end of Saturday's opening stage.

It was confirmed on Sunday morning that Cavendish would take no further part in the race because of the injuries he suffered after colliding with Simon Gerrans during the sprint finish in Harrogate, which was won by Marcel Kittel.

"I'm absolutely devastated," Cavendish said. "I had some optimism that the swelling would go down overnight, but it's worse this morning.

"I knew straight away because normally in crashes I bounce back straight away. This was the first time in my career that I knew something was up, but I wanted to finish. I was able to do that, but I was in pain."

Cavendish admitted he might need surgery on the shoulder and further apologised for the incident which, following the conclusion of stage one, he claimed was his fault.

"I spoke to Gerrans at the finish and then I called him at his hotel last night, too," Cavendish said on Sunday. "I hope that Simon is OK and today is a stage for him. He's a good guy and I'm sorry."

Cavendish's withdrawal means that only three British riders remain in Le Tour's field; defending champion Chris Froome and Team Sky team-mate Geraint Thomas, as well as Orica-GreenEdge rider Simon Yates.

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