Kaizer Chiefs and South Africa goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune fractured his cheek bone in Sunday’s 1-0 victory over Chippa United in a Telekom Knockout quarter-final match.
Khune was rushed to hospital, where a scan revealed an "optical fracture".
He could be out for a period of between two and six weeks.
The injury leaves the 30-year-old in doubt for the World Cup qualifiers against Senegal on 10 November at the Peter Mokaba Stadium, Polokwane, and on 14 November at the Stade Leopold Sedar Senghor in Dakar.
Injury Update: Captain Itu has a fracture to a bone in his face. He will see a specialist regarding this and we will update you after pic.twitter.com/nFBD2ni2ZT— Kaizer Chiefs (@KaizerChiefs) 6 November 2017
"Right now, we cannot rule him out," says Bafana Bafana doctor
Despite the injury, hopes remain that Khune will still be able to join up with Bafana Bafana for the must-win qualifiers.
According to national-team doctor Thulani Ngwenya, Khune cannot be ruled out yet. "What we know is that he is going to see a specialist and then we will take it from there," said Ngwenya.
"You know that in medicine we deal with facts, and right now we cannot rule him out, nor can we declare him fit.
"We are hopeful that he can be with us in camp before Friday’s game. There is no crack on his facial injury, which is a good sign. But we will have all the information on Tuesday."
Firstly I’d like to thank God for protecting me through everything yesterday, secondly I’d like to thank all my fans ,Family ,friends and my teammates for all the love and support given to me...you can’t keep a good man down ! #GodIsGreat 🙏🏻 #TeamNoRest #Team16_32 #KCOneTeam #PassionDriven #KCNeverSleeps ✌🏻#RespectToYouAll😉
Dependable replacements in short supply
Khune's absence in September due to illness saw Bafana Bafana flop in two qualifiers against Cape Verde.
Supersport United keeper Ronwen Williams replaced Khune for the match in Praia, but gave a poor performance in a game that South Africa lost 2-1.
For the return game in Durban, Orlando Pirates' Wayne Sandilands occupied the position. However, he too failed to rise to the challenge, as South Africa were again beaten 2-1.
Khune's return to the line-up for last month’s qualifier against Burkina Faso saw Bafana Bafana bounce back to claim a 3-1 win at Soccer City.