“@jimmy9 ruled out of the first Test vs @OfficialCSA with a calf strain. He’ll be assessed for 2nd Test,” the ECB wrote on its official Twitter account.
Anderson, England’s leading Test wicket-taker, underwent a scan on his right calf muscle on Tuesday and will not be risked for the first Test, which begins on Boxing Day.
England hope that the 33-year-old will be fit for the second Test in Cape Town on January 2.
Anderson was present for training on the Kingsmead outfield on Thursday, but was restricted to kicking a football around with bowling coach Ottis Gibson.
Warwickshire’s Chris Woakes is expected to take his place for the first Test.