After failing to complete the Tour de Yorkshire, and missing out on the Tour of California, Marcel Kittel will return at the World Ports Classic

Marcel Kittel will try to get his illness-plagued season back on track at the World Ports Classic, starting on May 23 in Rotterdam.

The two stage race takes riders from Rotterdam, the largest port in Europe, to Antwerp and back the following day.

As a race for the sprinters, Kittel could be considered a favourite for the race, but his disrupted season has left him short of fitness and miles, with an attempted comeback at the Tour de Yorkshire coming to an end during stage one.

An illness picked up after the Tour Down Under, where he won the season-opening People’s Choice Classic, has restricted the German sprinter to just 12 completed days of racing this year, with Kittel keen to return to full fitness for the Tour de France.

>>> Marcel Kittel will not ride Tour of California as struggles continue

Kittel will line up against former winner Theo Bos and a host of other sprint talent at the race, including Ireland’s Sam Bennett, who won two stages of Bayern-Rundfahrt last week, and Nacer Bouhanni of Cofidis.