Ivan Basso diagnosed with cancer: Tinkoff-Saxo cyclist forced to withdraw from Tour de France 2015 after revealing he has testicular cancer

Basso will return to his home in Italy immediately

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The Independent Online

Tour de France cyclist Ivan Basso has withdrawn from this year's event after he revealed his has been diagnosed with testicular cancer.

Basso has represented the Tinkoff-Saxo team – led by general classification challenger Alberto Contador – during the first week of Le Tour, but he has revealed the news that he will no longer compete after suffering from cancer.

The 37-year-old Italian announced today: "Unfortunately I have a bad announcement. I have a small cancer in my left testicle, so you can understand that I have to go back to Italy. We discovered this just two hours ago."

Basso (right) next to team-mate Alberto Contador

Having found out the shocking news on the first rest day of the Tour, Basso will now return to his Italian home before beginning his treatement.

Team Sky’s Chris Froome currently leads the 2015 Tour de France, with the 2013 champion 12 seconds ahead BMC Racing’s Tejay van Garderen and 27 seconds ahead of Greg van Avermaet. The two BMC Racing riders benefitted from the squad winning the team time trial on Sunday by just one second over Froome’s Team Sky.