Julian Alaphilippe has opted not to compete at Tokyo 2020 ©Getty Images

World champion Julian Alaphilippe has announced he will not compete at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, with the Frenchman instead focusing on other objectives.

Alaphilippe announced his decision on Twitter.

The 28-year-old said he had received the support of both his Deceuninck-Quick-Step team and the French national coach.

"I am informing you after having thought for a long time, in agreement with the coach of the France team and my team Deceuninck-Quickstep, not to be a candidate for selection for the next Tokyo Olympics," Alaphilippe said.

"It is a personal and well-considered decision.

"End-of-season objectives have been defined and in this sense choices must be made.

"I would be very proud to wear the France team jersey for the next World Championships.

"I obviously wish the best for the team that will be aligned on this occasion."

Alaphilippe is the reigning men’s road race world champion, with the Frenchman having attacked in the latter stages of the event last year to earn a solo victory in Imola.

Julian Alaphilippe is likely to focus on his World Championship title defence ©Getty Images
Julian Alaphilippe is likely to focus on his World Championship title defence ©Getty Images

He missed out on a podium finish at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, after being hindered by a crash.

Alaphilippe recovered to finish fourth at the event, ending 22 seconds behind the leading group of three riders.

The French star has enjoyed success in major one-day races in recent years, including winning Milan-San Remo and Strade Bianche in 2019 and three wins at Flèche Wallonne.

Alaphilippe is expected to form a key part of Deceuninck-Quick-Step's team at the Tour de France.

The three-week Grand Tour is scheduled to finish on July 18, with the Tokyo 2020 men’s road race set to be held on July 24.

The men's 234-kilometre road race will feature climbs of the lower slopes of Mount Fuji, before ending at Fuji International Speedway.

The men's road race will feature a total of 130 riders.

Alaphilippe could instead seek to prepare for his title defence at the International Cycling Union Road World Championships, which will take place in Flanders during September.