Injury forces Tour second Evans to miss Beijing time trial

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The Independent Online

The Tour de France runner-up Cadel Evans has withdrawn from the road time trial at the Olympic Games due to injury. The Australian will undergo treatment on a knee and make a decision on whether to travel to Beijing for the road race in the next week. If he pulls out, Evans will be replaced by the three-times world champion Michael Rogers.

On Monday Evans dismissed rumours he had suffered an injury that might threaten his Olympic campaign, but after the flight home to Switzerland his right knee swelled up and he decided to visit an orthopaedic specialist for precautionary scans.

Evans said: "I slipped on a wet floor on Sunday night and my team [Silence Lotto] doctor immediately had a look at it and said not to worry.

"But on the flight home my knee began to swell up so I had to consider going to see a specialist, who recommended cancelling my ride in the critérium in Belgium in favour of getting some scans done.

"It's not a major injury but it's something I will have to manage carefully. I recognised I might not be at my absolute best in the race against the clock but I can still make a significant contribution to the team effort for the road race. I'll be training and getting treatment over the next few days to confirm my participation by Monday.

"But I will not take a place in Beijing if everything doesn't go according to plan," Evans added.

* The International Olympic Committee yesterday revoked a ban on Iraq's participation in Beijing, although deadlines for team submissions mean the country's contingent will be limited to two athletes.