Cape Town - Former Proteas batsman Herschelle Gibbs believes that the Proteas have more concerns ahead of this year's Cricket World Cup than losing AB de Villiers.
De Villiers announced his retirement from international cricket in May last year and the Proteas have tried and tested various options since then to fill his massive role.
In De Villiers' middle-order absence, Reeza Hendricks, Aiden Markram and Rassie van der Dussen are battling it out for a place at the World Cup.
The Proteas have five ODIs against Sri Lanka, starting on March 3, to decide on their final squad for the World Cup in England in May.
Gibbs says that the Proteas will always have a chance at the illusive title, but he believes there are issues for Ottis Gibson and his side.
"We (South Africa) are always up there irrespective of ABD. We have got Faf (Du Plessis) and Quinton de Kock. The only issue for South Africa is not having an all-rounder," Gibbs told the Times of India.
Gibbs predicted that England and India are among the favourites to clinch the title.
"It is always wide open. The two standout contenders will be England and India," he said.
"It is difficult to say. A lot depends on the weather in England. The bowling attacks will all play a (huge) part."
The Proteas will kick off their 2019 Cricket World Cup campaign against hosts England on May 30.
The 10 teams will play each other in a single-round of matches - as was the case in the 1992 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
The top four teams will then progress to the semi-finals.
Lord's will host its fifth World Cup final on July 14.