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SA count mounting injury list

JP Duminy crashes one square on the off side Getty Images

The adjectives battered and bruised may have already been used to describe South Africa's 4-1 defeat to Australia but they apply as much literally as they do figuratively.

Four players were injured on the trip, bringing to six the total number of walking wounded in the camp including JP Duminy.

Duminy's is the most concerning injury because it has recurred in recent months, ruled him out of the five matches in Australia and required rehabilitation which will keep him out of action for at least another month.

Duminy has effectively been ruled out of the first Test against West Indies next month and is targeting the Boxing Day fixture for a comeback, according to South Africa's team manager Mohammed Moosajee, who is also a medical doctor.

Moosajee blamed the packed the schedule for South Africa's other worries that include niggles to AB de Villiers and Faf du Plessis, which will sideline them for three weeks each. "We played five games in ten days and it reflects in the injuries we have at the moment," he said.

Both de Villiers and du Plessis sat out the final match of South Africa's visit to Australia, nursing a cracked rib and chronic hip problem respectively. Neither will be available for their franchise, Titans, for the remaining matches of South Africa's domestic 20-over competition but both should have recovered in time for the start of the West Indies series that begins on December 17. But they will likely have no game time in the three weeks leading up the Test matches.

The news is better for Vernon Philander and Imran Tahir. Both are "about a week away", according to Moosajee, from recovering from shoulder and hamstring problems respectively. That will allow both to play for their franchises in the 20-over competition and with the Cobras and Dolphins in the running for a playoff place, the pair should have a couple of games each.

Similarly, left-arm spinner Aaron Phangiso will make his return for the Lions after a month out of the game with a finger injury. Phangiso returned home from South Africa with the team still in New Zealand before he had played a game on the tour but remains in line for a World Cup spot.