Geraint Thomas pulls out of Commonwealth Games in Delhi
Thomas was one of Wales' best hopes for gold in India
Olympic champion Geraint Thomas has pulled out of the Commonwealth Games.
The Cardiff man, 24, was one of Wales' biggest medal hopes in Delhi in the 4000m individual pursuit, the road race and time trial.
"It's a massive disappointment first and foremost but the hygiene and the risk of getting ill, it was a massive risk," Thomas told BBC Sport Wales.
Fellow Team Sky men Peter Kennaugh, Ian Stannard, Ben Swift and Russell Downing have also pulled out.
The riders cited health concerns, including the danger of dengue fever, as their withdrawals were announced.
Kennaugh was due to represent the Isle of Man, while Stannard, Swift and Downing were in the England team.
Another Sky rider, Greg Henderson, has withdrawn from the New Zealand team, but Team Sky insist they have put no pressure on their riders not to travel.
"These situations are down to the choice of the athletes themselves," said principal David Brailsford. "We, at Team Sky, can make recommendations to the athletes but the ultimate decision lies with them.
"Given the situation they have found themselves in with the Commonwealth Games nobody would blame the athletes for staying away, but there is no instruction from Team Sky on this issue."
August 2010 Sport Wales video feature - Delhi Dreams: Geraint Thomas
Team Wales confirmed on Thursday that they would be travelling to India, despite concerns about safety and the facilities at the venues and athletes' village.
"We are confident in the assurances that have been provided," a statement said.
"The advance party will now be moving into our accommodation and we look forward to welcoming our athletes in the coming days."
And Team Wales captain, weightlifter Michaela Breeze, said she was confident everything had been passed fit for purpose.
"The bottom line is, it's ready and we have got to go and concentrate now on the job in hand," Breeze told BBC Sport Wales.
Thomas struck Olympic gold and helped break the world record when he joined Bradley Wiggins, Ed Clancy and Paul Manning on the track to win the Team Pursuit crown for Team GB at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing - adding to their World Championship title.
I don't have a spleen any more [after a racing crash] and that fights infection
He also won the points race bronze at the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne and this year held the best young rider's white jersey during the first week of the Tour de France.
"I don't have a spleen any more [after a racing crash] and that fights infection, so that made it an even greater risk for me [to travel to India]," said Thomas.
"My girlfriend and family were really relieved when I told them.
"It's a massive disappointment, I only get to ride for Wales once every four years, but that's the decision I had to make.
"Team Sky gave their opinion, but it was down to me at the end of the day. I'm just going to have a break now then start building for next season."
Thomas' fellow Olympic gold medallist Nicole Cooke is set to lead the charge for Wales' women as well as contesting the time trial in Delhi.
Delhi Dreams: Nicole Cooke
On the track, Junior World Championships double-gold success Becky James, Jon Mould and Luke Rowe - who has shown glimpses of his talent in World Cup races this season - are the best bets to make an impact.
Both Mould and Rowe will also ride the road, with Rob Partridge another notable racer, while the likes of Jessica Allen, Angharad Mason and Kara Chesworth should provide Cooke with the type of team support the Beijing gold medallist says she has lacked with Wales in the past.
Wales team manager Gareth Sheppard said before Thomas' withdrawal that the squad can deliver in Delhi.
Name: Jessica Allen Event: Women's road race Date of birth: 21 August, 1989 From: Brecon Achievements: Raced in 2008 World Championships
Name: Yanto Baker Event: Men's road race Date of birth: 6 January, 1980 From: Aberystwyth Achievements: Competed in two Commonwealth Games
Name: Kara Chesworth Event: Women's road race Date of birth: 4 January, 1972 From: Tywyn, Gwynedd
Name: Nicole Cooke Event: Women's road race, time trial Date of birth: 13 April, 1983 From: Vale of Glamorgan Achievements: 2008 Olympic and world champion and 2002 Commonwealth champion
Name: Paul Esposti Event: Men's road race Date of birth: 1 January, 1972 From: Cardiff Achievements: Fifth in 1998 Commonwealth Games road race
Name: Alexandra Greenfield Event: Women's scratch, points, road race Date of birth: 7 September, 1990 From: Barry Achievements: Double junior European points race champion and 2009 World team pursuit winner
Name: Sam Harrison Event: Individual pursuit, team pursuit, points Date of birth: 24 June, 1992 From: Risca Achievements: 2009 team pursuit silver at the European junior track championships
Name: Becky James Event: Sprint, 500m time trial Date of birth: 29 November, 1991 From: Abergavenny Achievements: 2009 Double UCI junior track cycling world championship gold
Name: Rhys Lloyd Event: Men's road race (reserve track tbc) Date of birth: 23 January, 1989 From: Porthcawl Achievements: Competed in 2008 tour of Britain
Name: Angharad Mason Event: Women's road race Date of birth: 14 May, 1979 From: Bridgend Achievements: A former triathlete who has represented Wales as a karate black belt before taking up cycling 18 months ago
Name: Lily Matthews Event: Women's road race Date of birth: 30 September, 1989 From: Builth Wells Achievements: The former cross country runner represented Great Britain in the 2009 world mountain biking championships
Name: Jon Mould Event: Scratch, points, men's road race, team pursuit Date of birth: 4 April, 1991 From: Newport Achievements: European madison champion
Name: Lewis Oliva Event: Sprint, keirin Date of birth: 23 August, 1992 From: Chepstow Achievements: National junior keirin title
Name: Rob Partridge Event: Men's road race, time trial Date of birth: 11 September, 1985 From: Wrexham Achievements: Competed at the 2006 Commonwealth Games
Name: Hannah Rich Event: Scratch, points, women's road race Date of birth: 3 January 1991 From: Caldicot, Monmouthshire Achievements: Won National senior scratch race title
Name: Luke Rowe Event: Scratch, points, team pursuit, men's road race Date of birth: 10 March, 1990 From: Cardiff Achievements: Won under-23 World Cup race, second in 2008 European road race championships and won madison and runner-up in team pursuit at 2008 European Track Championships
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