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Cavendish ups Tour team chances with Elektrotoer finale win

Cavendish at Catalunya earlier this year

Cavendish at Catalunya earlier this year (Image credit: AFP Photo)

British neo-pro sprinter Mark Cavendish, one of the first riders to sign the UCI's anti-doping pledge, won the final stage of Ster Elektrotoer in Holland; his sixth win of the season.

Cavendish, who was recently named to T-Mobile's pre-selection of 13 riders for the Tour de France and is waiting to hear if he will be named to T-Mobile's 9-man final squad, won in a bunch sprint. "I was below par at the start of the tour after traveling here direct from signing the UCI declaration in Geneva," Cavendish said after the race. "My legs were a bit heavy. But I got my rhythm going again in the past couple of stages. Today I was back to my best. My team mates set up the sprint for me perfectly. I moved to the front with 800 to go and kept it going all the way to the line."

Belgian cycling legend Johan Museeuw was quoted on BBC Sport's website Sunday as saying "British cycling needs a star to take it to the next level - like Lance Armstrong (in) America. Cavendish can be that star. He is ready."

Wouter Weylandt (Quickstep) and Robert Förster (Gerolsteiner) finished second and third on the 149 km stage between Sittard and Eindhoven at Ster Elektrotoer. Germany's Martens had led Langeveld by two seconds going into the stage, but the Dutch rider picked up time bonuses on the intermediate sprints during the stage, and ended up two seconds ahead of his rival.

T-Mobile is reported to be announcing their nine-man Tour de France lineup on Monday.

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