The Cox Plate will be without an international runner with the news Afsare will miss Moonee Valley's $3 million feature through injury.
Efforts to treat a fetlock injury in time for the race on Saturday week have failed and the Luca Cumani-trained horse will now return to England.
The injury to Afsare is a blow for the Cumani stable which identified him as the ideal type of horse for the weight-for-age feature.
"Unfortunately the injury that Afsare suffered last week to his right fore fetlock has not recovered sufficiently and on veterinary advice he cannot continue in his preparations for the Cox Plate and spring racing carnival," Cumani's travelling foreman Charlie Henson said.
"The stable is definitely looking to aim a horse at the race next year and is disappointed that this year we won't be saddling our first Cox Plate runner.
While the Cox Plate is off for Cumani, the stable has My Quest For Peace in Saturday's Caulfield Cup as well as emergency Ibicenco and also has Melbourne Cup favourite Mount Athos.