Olympics and two-time London Marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge will not defend his title this year, according to the organisers.

Kipchoge says he has instead opted to focus on sponsor Nike race around the same time as he seeks to run under two hours at an unknown destination.

The Olympic champion is set to race alongside Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopia and Zersenay Tadese of Eritrea.

The London Marathon organisers have released a star-studded field for this year’s event to be heralded by Ethiopian legend Kenenisa Bekele.

Bekele’s big rival at the event will be 2015 New York City Marathon, Stanley Biwott, who hopes to mark his 31st birthday, which falls just two days before the race, with his first win in London.

He finished runner-up in 2014, fourth in 2015 and second again last year in a personal best time of 2:03:51.