Martin Guptill's return to the New Zealand limited-overs side has been put on hold while he continues to recover from injury.
The Auckland batsman is missing from the squad of 15 named today for the three ODIs against the West Indies, starting at Whangarei's Cobham Oval next Wednesday.
That opens the door for lefthander George Worker to get an opportunity at the top of the order, where he'll open with blockbusting hitter Colin Munro.
Worker has been sighted in recent New Zealand squads but rarely gets an outing. This shapes as a chance to restate his credentials.
The 28-year-old has played four ODIs, averaging, 36, in South Africa in 2015 and against Ireland and Bangladesh ahead of the Champions Trophy in May.
"We will miss Martin's influence at the top of the order, but unfortunately he is not back to full fitness and this provides a well-earned opportunity for George in the ODI series," national selector Gavin Larsen said.
Munro is best known as an aggressive middle order batsman but he took his chance on the tour of India recently, with scores of 28, 10 and 75.
Captain Kane Williamson and senior seamer Tim Southee will play just the first match of the series before taking a short break. Williamson will also miss the opening T20 in Nelson at the end of the year.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Tom Latham will lead New Zealand in Williamson's absence. His only previous leadership experience of the national team came in the short series against Ireland and Bangladesh but is well regarded and clearly Williamson's No 2.
Auckland speedster Lockie Ferguson is in for the series along with Adam Milne, offering the chance for New Zealand to line up two genuinely pacy bowlers in the same XI, something of a luxury in the national team.
''Lockie has been in excellent form and we got to see a bit of him in Wellington while he was a part of the test squad. To have him and Adam Milne in the squad is exciting from a pace perspective,'' Larsen added.
Batsman Neil Broom comes in for Williamson for the second and third matches, in Christchurch on December 23 and 26.
New Zealand will assemble in Whangarei on Monday.
A three-game T20 series wraps up the West Indies tour, with games in Nelson and Mt Maunganui between December 29 and January 3.
Expect a batch of other players to get an opportunity as the season progresses. The days of an unchanging squad over a long summer are over.
"For those guys playing in all three formats it's important we keep them fresh and build depth leading into a World Cup year.
"Tim and Kane will both take breaks during this series, but there will be others who will also rest throughout the season,'' Larsen added.
New Zealand ODI squad to play the West Indies:
Kane Williamson (c, first ODI only), Tom Latham, George Worker, Colin Munro, Ross Taylor, Neil Broom (second and third ODIs only), Henry Nicholls, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner (second and third ODIs only), Todd Astle, Matt Henry, Adam Milne, Tim Southee (first ODI only), Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult.
West Indies squad:
Jason Holder (capt), Jason Mohammed, Sunil Ambris, Ronsford Beaton, Shannon Gabriel, Chris Gayle, Kyle Hope, Shai Hope, Alzarri Joseph, Evin Lewis, Nikita Miller, Ashley Nurse, Rovman Powell, Marlon Samuels, Kesrick Williams.
Dec 20: First ODI, Whangarei
Dec 23: Second ODI, Christchurch
Dec 26: Third ODI, Christchurch