LONDON: Opening batsman Chris Gayle has been recalled to the West Indies one-day international (ODI) squad for the first two games of this month’s five-match series against England.
Gayle has not played for West Indies since he scored 73 in an 18-run ODI defeat against Bangladesh last July and opted out of the tour to India and Bangladesh in October and November.
The 39-year-old, who has scored 9,727 runs and racked up 23 centuries in 284 ODIs, was recalled by the West Indies cricket board as it fine-tunes the squad ahead of the World Cup in England next May.
Gayle was West Indies’ highest run scorer in the previous World Cup in 2015, making 340 runs at an average of 56.66.
Spin bowler Ashley Nurse has returned from injury while 23-year-old wicketkeeper Nicholas Pooran earns his first call-up to the national side.
“He (Pooran) is clearly a young player with undoubted talent and we believe he can add value to our middle order,” chairman of selectors Courtney Browne said in a statement.
“As we continue our Cricket World Cup preparations, the upcoming series against the top-ranked ODI side is a great opportunity to gauge where we are as a team.”
The one-day international series begins in Barbados on Feb. 20 with the first two matches to be played at the Kensington Oval in Bridgetown.
West Indies are 2-0 up in the test series, with the third and final test starting on Saturday in St. Lucia.
WEST INDIES FULL ODI SQUAD: Jason Holder (captain), Chris Gayle, Devendra Bishoo, Darren Bravo, Fabian Allen, Shimron Hetmyer, Shai Hope, Evin Lewis, Ashley Nurse, Keemo Paul, Nicholas Pooran, Kemar Roach, Rovman Powell, Oshane Thomas