Salisbury JournalFroome reveals extent of injuries (From Salisbury Journal)

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Froome reveals extent of injuries

Salisbury Journal: Chris Froome will be off his bike for "a few weeks" Chris Froome will be off his bike for "a few weeks"

Chris Froome fractured his left wrist and right hand as his Tour de France title defence ended on Wednesday, the Team Sky rider has revealed.

Froome's Tour ended not in Paris on July 27, but with a premature departure home, battered and bruised following an eventful two days in northern France.

After the second of two crashes on stage five from Ypres to Arenberg Porte du Hinaut - and three crashes in two days - Froome withdrew to his support car, with Richie Porte inheriting the leadership of Team Sky.

Froome, who returned home to Monaco on Wednesday evening, wrote on Twitter: "MRIs done, confirmed fractures to the left wrist & right hand. Time for some R&R..."

Froome, a convincing winner of the 2013 Tour, crashed on stage four and had immediate scans which could not confirm any fractures.

Further tests at the Monaco Institute of Sport showed the breaks.

Team Sky's lead doctor Alan Farrell told teamsky.com: "Chris suffered a small fracture to one of the bones in his left wrist.

"The investigations also revealed a small fracture to a bone in Chris' right hand, which hadn't caused him any undue pain over the two stages.

"The fact Chris hadn't felt discomfort in his right hand shows how tough he is, and the pain threshold he has.

"Chris has been incredibly brave throughout this whole process and clearly did not take the decision to withdraw from the Tour de France lightly.

"Thankfully, his injuries won't be keeping him off the bike for too long and we expect him to return to training in the next few weeks."

Froome could now alter his season's focus to the Vuelta a Espana, which begins in Jerez on August 23.

Froome's team-mate Xabier Zandio abandoned the Tour following a crash on Thursday's sixth stage.

Farrell added: "Xabi withdrew on Thursday after suffering a head injury during the race.

"An initial road-side assessment revealed that more urgent investigations were required, so we transferred him to a local hospital where he underwent a CT brain scan and a series of X-rays.

"I'm pleased to report that they came back clear and Xabi is now recovering at home in Spain.

"He has extensive superficial injuries from his crashes on stages five and six, but he too is set to make a relatively quick recovery."

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