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Nibali to have surgery on broken back

(AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

MILAN (AP) Vincenzo Nibali will undergo surgery next week on the back he injured during a crash in the Tour de France as the Bahrain Merida cyclist aims to be back to ride in the Spanish Vuelta.

Nibali broke the 10th vertebrae in a crash on the famous climb up to Alpe d'Huez last week when a fan caught their camera strap on his handlebars.

Bahrain Merida doctor Emilio Magni said on Thursday: "The team and the rider agreed to the decision to have a percutaneous vertebroplasty surgery."

He adds the operation will be next week in Italy.

Italian media reports the operation will take place on Monday, and the 33-year-old Nibali is hoping to be back in training the following week.

The Spanish Vuelta starts on Aug. 25.

Nibali won the Vuelta in 2010. He also won the Tour de France in 2014 and the Giro d'Italia twice, in 2013 and 2016.

Updated July 26, 2018