July 6, 2015 / 10:49 AM / 2 years ago

McIlroy suffers severe ankle injury ahead of British Open

LONDON (Reuters) - Rory McIlroy's defence of golf's British Open has been thrown into doubt after he said on Monday that he had ruptured ankle ligaments in a friendly football match with his friends.

"Total rupture of left ATFL (ankle ligament) and associated joint capsule damage in a soccer kickabout," McIlroy wrote on his Instagram account.

"Continuing to asses extent of injury and treatment plan day by day. Rehab already started...working hard to get back as soon as I can," he said, alongside a photograph showing his left ankle in a heavy bandage and brace.

McIlory's showdown with double major winner Jordan Spieth was expected to be the highlight of the Open, which takes place at St Andrews on July 16-19.

Editing by Toby Davis.

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