Matt Lloyd's season debut delayed by broken shoulder bone

Matt Lloyd attacks

Giro d'Italia star, Matt Lloyd will begin his season later than planned after breaking his shoulder while training at home in Melbourne, Australia.

"It could be, in a way, some kind of blessing in disguise," Lloyd told Australia's SBS. "A lot of guys don't get a chance to have forced recovery at this time of year because they have to start their programmes.

"It does put a dampener on things but from a seasonal perspective it could be okay."

Lloyd began his season at home last year during the Australian summer, racing criteriums and the Tour Down Under. He will skip these races due to Friday morning's accident. SBS reported that Lloyd's accident involved a tram and motorists on a busy street, but that the vehicles did not hit him.

"These things," added Lloyd, "can always happen in the traffic or the most unlikely circumstances."

Besides breaking his right shoulder, Lloyd damaged vertebrae on the upper part of his spine. They should heal themselves with physiotherapy. However, doctors will operate on his shoulder on Thursday. They need to insert a screw to keep the arm from dislocating.

At the 2009 Amstel Gold Race, Lloyd broke several vertebrae on his lower spine.

The 27-year-old is expected to be home to celebrate Christmas and be back to a normal training programme at the end of February. He is targeting the Giro d'Italia again. This year he won the stage to Marina di Carrara and the mountain classification's green jersey. Next year, he will aim for the green jersey and maybe the overall leader's pink jersey.

Lloyd should be fully recovered in three months, in time for Tirreno-Adriatico and the Ardennes Classics. He is expected to lead team Omega Pharma-Lotto at the Giro d'Italia when it starts in Turin on May 7.

"From what the team's told me," said Lloyd, "they're 100 per cent for the Giro again."

Related links

Giro d'Italia 2011: Giro goes one up on Tour with spectacular route

Matt Lloyd's Giro climber's jersey dream

Matt Lloyd solos to win Giro d'Italia stage six

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