Tadej Pogačar has successful surgery on fractured wrist, expected to be out for 'approximately six weeks'

UAE Team Emirates rider crashed out of Liège-Bastogne-Liège early on Sunday

Tadej Pogačar at La Flèche Wallonne
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Tadej Pogačar has undergone successful surgery in Belgium on his fractured wrist sustained at Liège–Bastogne–Liège on Sunday, and will be out for "approximately six weeks" while he recovers.

A brief statement released by UAE Team Emirates confirmed that the Slovenian had undergone successful surgery in Belgium on his fractured left scaphoid sustained in the race eventually won by Remco Evenepoel. It was the second successive victory in Liège for the Belgian World Champion.

The team’s medical director, Dr Adrian Rotunno said: "The surgery on Tadej's scaphoid was successful and he will travel home tomorrow for recovery and rehabilitation.”

According to comments from Dr Rotunno provided to Belgian news outlet Het Laatse Nieuws, the two-time Tour de France champion’s recovery period is expected to last from anything between four to six weeks.

“In addition to the two fractures, Tadej has many wounds on his hands, which first have to heal completely, after which he can carefully start training indoors,” Rotunno said, before confirming that Pogačar would be forced to sit out a team altitude training camp in the Sierra Nevada in early May, slightly hampering his preparation for the Tour in July.

An update from Pogačar's team released on Monday evening, confirmed further details of the surgery that the Slovenian underwent.

"Tadej had a comminuted scaphoid fracture which  required a small screw to realign the bone fragments. The procedure was successful and he will begin his recovery period at home," Dr Rotunno added. "Due to the nature of the injury, it’s approximately 6 weeks recovery. Though he will start with immediate rehab, and some training on an indoor trainer in the coming days."

After winning the Amstel-Gold race as well as La Flèche Wallonne last week, the Slovenian was bidding to win a historic Ardennes triple at the weekend. However, Pogačar was brought down in a crash with Mikkel Honoré (EF Education-EasyPost) 85 kilometres into La Doyenne, and was forced to abandon the race.

The Slovenian was rushed to hospital in nearby Genk, where specialists operated on his injuries immediately.

Team principal for UAE Emirates, Mauro Gianetti explained to WielerFlits that it’s “too early” to gauge exactly how much of an impact the 24-year-olds injuries will have on his final preparations for the Tour.

“It’s too early. We don’t have enough information about it,” Gianetti said as he waited for updates on Pogačar’s surgery on Sunday afternoon.

“The important thing now is that with the operation everything will be fine and in the next two to three days probably we will have more information to manage the preparation for the Tour. We wish everything will be OK.”

The 24-year-old missed out on a third successive overall victory at the French Grand Tour last year, something he will hope to rectify in 2023. Pogačar was defeated by Jumbo-Visma’s Jonas Vingegaard, who outperformed him in the mountains, winning stages atop the Col du Granon and later on at Hautacam. 

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Tom Thewlis

Tom has been writing for Cycling Weekly since 2022 and his news stories, rider interviews and features appear both online and in the magazine. 

Since joining the team, he has reported from some of professional cycling's biggest races and events including the Tour de France and the World Championships in Glasgow. He has also covered races elsewhere across the world. 

As well as on the ground reporting, Tom writes race reports from the men's and women's WorldTour and helps with coverage of UK domestic cycling.