Greg Rutherford
Rutherford won bronze last summer at the 2016 Olympic Games in RioGetty

Long jump champion Greg Rutherford will miss August's World Athletics Championships in London with an ankle injury.

The London 2012 gold medal winner and defending world champion says he has struggled with a string of problems that have left him unable to jump, denying him a grand return to the capital's Olympic Stadium where he enjoyed his most famous success on 'Super Saturday' five years ago.

"In the last few days I have had to accept an unfortunate reality. I did everything I could, but a string of injuries at the worst possible time means I will be unable to defend my title in London," Rutherford said in a statement.

"With an incredible start to the year in training and very promising early season form, I have had a difficult series of setbacks as the season progressed. Most recently, a badly damaged ankle ligament and a sportsman's hernia really put paid to my plans.

"The injuries have taken longer to real than we hoped, and I have been unable to even jump at all in training, let alone compete.

"I am truly gutted. That stadium is such a special place for me, I am so devastated that I won't be competing in front of the best fans in the world, in the stadium that changed my life. But, I'll definitely be there to support my British teammates and soak up what will be an amazing atmosphere and an amazing championships."

With Rutherford absent, Mo Farah will be the only remaining protagonist from London 2012's infamous 'Super Saturday' where Great Britain won three athletics gold medals in the space of 46 minutes. Jessica Ennis-Hill, who won gold that night along with Farah and Rutherford, retired last October.