Proteas superstar AB de Villiers will miss the ODI series and three-match Test series against Australia.
The skipper will undergo surgery to repair a troublesome left elbow impingement injury after failing to respond to rehab and treatment and will only be back for the Boxing Day Test against Sri Lanka.
Proteas team manager Dr Mohammed Moosajee says: “AB de Villiers is still symptomatic and has not recovered from his elbow impingement injury which makes surgery the only long-term solution.
“We have tried the conservative management of rest, physio, rehab and cortisone infiltration into the elbow, but that has not yielded the results that we would have liked.
“He will have surgery to the elbow early next week and the target is to hopefully have him back for the Sri Lankan home series over the Christmas period.”
Rilee Rossouw will remain as batting cover in the squad for the five-match ODI series against Australia starting at Centurion on Friday.
The Aussies warmed up for the series with a nine-wicket win over Ireland yesterday.