Senegal defender Ibrahima Sonko has pulled out of the African Nations Cup, which starts in January, to continue playing for Reading.
Reading defender Sonko has chosen club over country
The 24-year-old, who has one cap, was named in the 22-man squad but would have missed four league games and an FA Cup game for the Championship leaders.
"I have said no and it was a hard decision. It's hard to say no to your country," he told the club website.
"It'll be worth it if we go up, that's what everyone's working towards."
Sonko said he had spoken to manager Steve Coppell before making his decision - and the Royals boss had left the decision up to him.
"I spoke to the manager before the decision and he wanted me to stay but didn't put any pressure on me. I appreciated that," added Sonko.
The African Nations Cup takes place in Egypt from 20 January to 10 February.