Australia's captain, Meg Lanning, will miss the Women's Ashes series this year after having surgery on her right shoulder.
Lanning is expected to be sidelined for six to eight months and her absence will be a major blow to an Australia side seeking to retain the Ashes at home in a series of three ODIs, one Test and three T20Is in October and November.
"Meg has been managing a right shoulder injury and following the recent World Cup, it became apparent that she would require surgery," Australia's team physio, Kate Mahony, said.
"Meg underwent surgery earlier this week and we expect that she will require a long rehabilitation period of six to eight months, ruling her out of the upcoming Ashes series. We will continue to monitor her progress, with return to play timelines to become clearer once she has commenced rehabilitation."
Lanning was the second-leading run-scorer from either side in the 2015 Ashes, and was the only player from either team to score a century in the series.
"Whilst it's very disappointing to be unavailable for the Ashes, I'm looking forward to getting stuck into my rehabilitation and returning to cricket as soon as possible," Lanning said.
"It's an incredibly special occasion for any cricketer to be a part of and I wish the team all the best as they set out to retain the Ashes."
Australia's selectors will name a replacement captain in the coming weeks.