Bangalore: Sunil Narine, the mystery offspinner, was left out of a 13-man West Indies squad for the first Test against Zimbabwe starting at Bridgetown in Barbados on Tuesday (March 12), while Marlon Samuels, the allrounder, who has recovered from an eye injury, returned to the side.
Chris Gayle, who was rested for the One-Day International and Twenty20 International series against Zimbabwe, was back in the side, and will open the batting alongside Kieron Powell.
Also included were Shane Shillingford, the offspinner who will replace Narine, and Shannon Gabriel, the fast bowler. Among other omissions from the side that beat Bangladesh 2-0 in November 2012 were Ravi Rampaul and Fidel Edwards, the fast bowlers.
Kemar Roach, who was injured then, makes a comeback. Edwards had picked up 6 for 90 in the second Test against Bangladesh, and will consider himself unfortunate to miss out.
There was also no place for Ramnaresh Sarwan, the veteran batsman who made a comeback to the ODI side for the series against Zimbabwe after spending more than a year on the sidelines.
Narine had a poor tour of Bangladesh, picking up just three wickets in two Tests at an average of 114.33, while Veerasammy Permaul, the left-arm spinner, returned eight wickets at 31.62.
Most recently, however, Narine showed signs of returning to form with an impressive haul of 6 for 38 for Trinidad and Tobago against Guyana. The match marked the first time Shivnarine Chanderpaul batted with his son Tagenarine in a first-class fixture, and both father and son fell to Narine.
Squad for first Test: Chris Gayle, Kieron Powell, Darren Bravo, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Marlon Samuels, Narsingh Deonarine, Denesh Ramdin (wk, vice-capt), Darren Sammy (capt), Tino Best, Shannon Gabriel, Veerasammy Permaul, Kemar Roach, Shane Shillingford.