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Sky set to surprise Amstel opposition?

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Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky Procycling) after Paris-Roubaix

Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky Procycling) after Paris-Roubaix (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky)

Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

After a few days of uncertainty, Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky) will be taking part in the Amstel Gold Race this Sunday.

A silver medallist in the World Championships last year on a course which used the same finish - and with the same 21 kilometer final lap - Sky sports director Nicolas Portal confirmed to Cyclingnews that Boasson Hagen "finally is racing," and that the former Gent-Wevelgem winner could, like teammate Vasil Kiryenka, be up for a longer breakaway move.

"Both of them are here to help and they could do something in the last 60 kilometres if there's a attack there with dangerous riders, and we need somebody to follow in that move," Portal said.

"It's a finish that suits [Boasson Hagen], but the great thing is that we've got a lot of other riders who did the Worlds last year," - Urán, Henao, Jonathan Tiernan-Locke, Vasil Kiryenka and Boasson Hagen - "so we know the course and we can play a lot of different options. It will be very difficult to get away and stay away on the Cauberg now, although Gilbert proved it was just possible, but the complexity of the finish means it's not just about strength, you have to think very fast in order to be able win."

However, he said the main Sky challenge if the race stays together could well come from Colombians Rigoberto Uran, who did not ride Amstel in 2012, and Sergio Henao, who finished 21st in Amstel last year. Uran has nonetheless performed well in the recent Volta a Catalunya, whilst Henao was third in the Vuelta al País Vasco after winning on the tough summit finish of stage three and leading the race for three days.

Portal confirmed the absence of Bradley Wiggins in Liège - Bastogne - Liège, saying "Liège suits him, [but] it's his and the team trainer's decision. He'll be building up his Giro form in the Tour of Trentin with a lot of Sky's Giro riders and then go straight on [to the Giro d'Italia] from there."