The five-day Volta ao Algarve UCI ProSeries cycling race has been postponed due to a surge in Covid-19 infections in Portugal.

The event was scheduled to start on February 17 but has been moved provisionally to May 5-9.

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"Postponement is a difficult decision, but it has become inevitable, given the evolution of the pandemic situation in Portugal," a statement said.

Portugal is experiencing a rapid rise in infection rates, with cases rising 40% on Wednesday and the national health system (SNS) is overwhelmed with admissions.

14 WorldTour teams were set to take part in the event that now joins a long list of those in the cycling calendar affected by Covid-19. The Tour Down Under, Vuelta a San Juan, Challenge Majorca, Herald Sun Tour, Tour Colombia and Tour Antalya have also suffered cancellation or postponement.

With additional reporting from Reuters

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