REGULAR captain Darren Sammy and key batsman Chris Gayle have been rested by West Indies for the first two ODIs of their three-match home series against Zimbabwe. Allrounder Dwayne Bravo will lead the team in the matches, which are scheduled for February 22 and 24 in St George's.
Gayle, a WICB release said, had asked to skip the games, while it was decided that Sammy needed a break after playing in every match for West Indies over the past two years. The selectors are yet to name a vice-captain.
Wicketkeeper Devon Thomas, who travelled with West Indies to Australia for their just-concluded limited-overs series missed out, making way for Denesh Ramdin to return. Ramdin's last ODI for West Indies was against New Zealand in July 2012, though he played the World Twenty20 and the Test series against Bangladesh that followed.
Fast bowler Jason Holder was also left out, with the selectors going in for the extra spinner in left-armer Veerasammy Permaul who had a fine first-class game for Guyana against Leeward Islands last week, taking a match haul of 9 for 115.
Devon Thomas had a poor series in Australia with the bat, totaling 48 in five ODIs. Holder had played only two of those games, claiming the wicket of Aaron Finch in both matches.
Veteran batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan, who made a comeback on the Australian tour after a contentious 18-month absence from the team, retained his spot despite getting two ducks in three ODIs in Australia.
Marlon Samuels, meanwhile, is still sidelined, currently recovering from the facial injury that he suffered at the Big Bash League after being struck in the face while facing Lasith Malinga.
Following the ODI series, West Indies also host Zimbabwe in two Twenty20s and two Tests.