Bradley Wiggins out of Tour of Switzerland through injury

Britain's Sir Bradley Wiggins has withdrawn from the Tour of Switzerland through injury, less than three weeks before the start of the Tour de France.

Wiggins, 34, injured his right thigh in a crash on Tuesday's fourth stage.

"We felt the best plan of action would be to withdraw him," said Team Sky doctor Steve Baynes.

A day after Wiggins's crash, fellow Briton Mark Cavendish pitched over his handlebars in a crash near the end of stage five, which Sacha Modolo won.

Omega Pharma-QuickStep's Cavendish, who won stage four, fell heavily after tangling with Matt Goss - of Orica Green Edge - just 300m from the finish.

Sacha Modolo wins stage five of the Tour of Switzerland

Sacha Modolo celebrates holding off Peter Sagan to win stage five

The 29-year-old avoided serious injury and was able to complete the stage, which Lampre rider Modolo won in four hours eight minutes six seconds.

The Italian, 26, edged out Peter Sagan and John Degenkolb to secure victory on the 184km stage from Ossingen to Buren an der Aare.

Germany's Tony Martin retained a six-second lead overall, with Tom Dumoulin second and Sagan third.

Wiggins 'gutted' to miss Tour de France

The Tour de France, won by Wiggins in 2012, starts in Yorkshire on 5 July.

Wiggins's participation was already in serious doubt after he told the BBC he would not be competing "as things stand".

The four-time Olympic gold medallist was absent as Chris Froome won the race last year, and claimed Team Sky's focus was again on his fellow Briton.

Wiggins was left with bruising and swelling to his right thigh after crashing 28km from the end of Tuesday's stage.

He will now switch his focus to the National Road Championships in Monmouthshire on 26 June.

"I was the last man in the peloton, trying to stay out of trouble, when it happened," said Wiggins.

"They all slammed on the brakes ahead of me, but there was another rider riding full gas who rode straight into the back of me.

"I probably could have started today, but it's best to play it safe and come home."

Stage five result:

1. Sacha Modolo (Italy / Lampre) 4:08:06

2. Peter Sagan (Slovakia / Cannondale)

3. John Degenkolb (Germany / Giant)

4. Alexander Kristoff (Norway / Katusha)

5. Jose Joaquin Rojas (Spain / Movistar)

6. Danny van Poppel (Netherlands / Trek)

7. Jonas Van Genechten (Belgium / Lotto)

8. Heinrich Haussler (Australia / IAM Cycling)

9. Nino Schurter (Switzerland / Orica)

10. Jacopo Guarnieri (Italy / Astana)

General Classification:

1. Tony Martin (Germany / Omega Pharma - Quick-Step) 18:27:47

2. Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands / Giant) +6

3. Peter Sagan (Slovakia / Cannondale) +10

4. Bauke Mollema (Netherlands / Belkin) +17

5. Tom-Jelte Slagter (Netherlands / Garmin) +23

6. Davide Formolo (Italy / Cannondale) +27

7. Jon Izagirre (Spain / Movistar)

8. Roman Kreuziger (Czech Republic / Tinkoff - Saxo) +28

9. Mathias Frank (Switzerland / IAM Cycling) +29

10. Mattia Cattaneo (Italy / Lampre)