Australia allrounder Mitchell Marsh is optimistic he will make a speedy recovery following successful ankle surgery in Melbourne last week.
The 26-year-old was forced to pull out of a deal to play the UK's County Championship with London-based Surrey this winter.
He had been expected to target the start of the Australian domestic summer for a return, but Marsh now says he hopes to be fit and firing in time for a planned Test series against Pakistan in the UAE in September or October.
Last summer Marsh established himself in Australia's Test side on the back of two centuries during the Ashes.
He failed to hit the same heights with the bat on the ill-fated Test tour of South Africa, with a 96 in Durban his top score. He battled a stomach bug in Port Elizbeth, but fought that off to claim key wickets in a crucial spell, and overcame a groin strain to feature in the Cape Town Test, and has long battled ongoing pain and stiffness in the left ankle.
That was operated on last week by a Melbourne specialist, and with Marsh returning to Perth on Friday.
"(I'm going to) keep my feet up a for a couple of weeks then get stuck into pre-season with Western Australia," he told Seven News at the Perth airport.
"Hopefully I can try and get over to play for Surrey at some stage, but if not be ready for Test matches in September."
The mooted Test series against Pakistan has not been confirmed by the PCB, but is expected to include two Tests and a limited overs series in late September.
Marsh spoke to Seven as news broke that the network had joined with pay TV broadcaster Fox Sports in a $1.182bn deal to broadcast cricket in Australia for the next six years.
The Western Australian joked it would be "delicious" to have legendary Seven commentator Bruce McAvaney on air for one of his towering sixes, a reference to McAvaney's famed appreciation of Hawthorn Australian rules footballer Cyril Rioli.
Marsh won Western Australia's Laurie Sawle Medal as the state's top cricketer at its end-of-season awards function following the South Africa tour, and said he was looking forward to a winter at home with family.
It is the second consecutive winter Marsh will spend recovering from surgery, having had his shoulder operated on after flying home from Australia's Test tour of India last year.
He spent the early stages of the recent domestic summer playing as a batsman only before making a triumphant return to international cricket in December's third Test against England in his hometown Perth.
A candidate to be Australia's Test vice-captain under Tasmanian wicketkeeper Tim Paine, who has been confirmed as the nation's 46th Test skipper, Marsh was set to play in all three formats for Surrey.
His position has been taken by South Africa opening batsman Dean Eglar, after the county also secured former Protea Morne Morkel on a Kolpak deal.