Durban, October 15: Hashim Amla will not recover from a finger injury in time to join South Africa's tour of Australia, coach Ottis Gibson has revealed.
The 35-year-old damaged his finger playing in the Caribbean Premier League in September, leading to Dean Elgar's recall to the one-day side to face Zimbabwe.
Amla will not return for the next set of limited-overs matches in Australia in November, but Gibson is hoping the series will give him an opportunity to build towards next year's World Cup.
"There are a lot of guys we have in our thoughts who will be in the squad to Australia," the head coach said.
"Hashim is injured. He is out of the squad already - as a selection group, we have already discussed that with him. We want to give him as much time as possible for him to get ready for the next set of cricket that he has coming up.
"We want to win . We want to go there with an attitude of trying to win. The squad that we pick will reflect that and reflect our feeling on the formula and the way we want to play cricket.
"There is a lot being said about being positive. We played that way in the first few games in Sri Lanka. The key is having the will to stick with it even when things get tough.
"For the last 12 months, we have been looking at players. In the next couple of months, the window is closing; the players have been told that the window is closing all the time.
"We are getting closer and closer to the guys that we want on the journey. In the Pakistan and Sri Lanka series, we want to be focusing on a core of 17 to 18 players we will be looking at."
Amla is involved in Cricket South Africa's thinking for the Mzansi Super League and is set to turn out for Durban Heat.