Rhys Webb has been left out of the Wales squad for the Six Nations, but coach Wayne Pivac has given a recall to veteran Dan Lydiate.
Pivac has resisted calls to bring back another veteran – Bath’s Cardiff Blues-bound outside-half Rhys Priestland – but there are also returns for fly-half Jarrod Evans, wing Hallam Amos and prop Rhodri Jones.
Scrum-half Webb, who returned from France to join the Ospreys and revive his Wales career, has lost out to Scarlets youngster Kieran Hardy, as well as established No.9 rivals Gareth Davies and Tomos Williams.
Pivac has named 36 players for the tournament which starts next month, with just one new cap involved – Scarlets flanker Josh Macleod who was named in the autumn squad last year but didn’t feature after picking up an injury before the campaign began.
Four players who made their international debuts in that campaign – Kieran Hardy, Callum Sheedy, Johnny Williams and Louis Rees-Zammit are all included.
Rhys Carre, Wyn Jones and Rhodri Jones (last appearance for Wales v South Africa in 2018) are named as the looseheads in the squad with Elliot Dee, Ryan Elias and Ken Owens (who missed the autumn campaign through injury) the hookers.
Leon Brown, Tomas Francis and Dillon Lewis are the three named tight-heads.
Jake Ball, Adam Beard, Alun Wyn Jones, Will Rowlands and Cory Hill are included as the second-rows.
Lydiate returns to the international set-up (last appearance v Australia in 2018) and is named alongside Josh Navidi, Aaron Wainwright, Taulupe Faletau, Macleod and Justin Tipuric.
Hardy, who made his debut back in November is named as one of three scrum-halves along with Gareth Davies and Tomos Williams, who has returned from injury.
Dan Biggar, Jarrod Evans and Sheedy are the three fly-halves.
Johnny Williams, Jonathan Davies, Nick Tompkins and Owen Watkin are named as the centres with George North, Josh Adams, Hallam Amos, Rees-Zammit, Leigh Halfpenny and Liam Williams named as Wales’ back-three options.
“We are hugely looking forward to meeting up as a squad on Monday and to the forthcoming campaign,” said head coach Wayne Pivac.
“The Guinness Six Nations is an important tournament and we have selected a squad accordingly.
“As we consistently spoke about, the autumn for us was about opportunity and development, looking ahead to RWC 2023 and it served that purpose for us.
“This campaign is different, it is tournament rugby and we are excited to get going and to play our part.
“We have picked a squad for this tournament based on form and we are excited to meet up on Monday and to get our preparation underway.”
WALES 2021 GUINNESS SIX NATIONS SQUAD
Rhys Carre (Cardiff Blues) (12 Caps)
Wyn Jones (Scarlets) (30 Caps)
Rhodri Jones (Ospreys) (17 Caps)
Elliot Dee (Dragons) (33 Caps)
Ryan Elias (Scarlets) (17 Caps)
Ken Owens (Scarlets) (77 Caps)
Leon Brown (Dragons) (12 Caps)
Tomas Francis (Exeter Chiefs) (52 Caps)
Dillon Lewis (Cardiff Blues) (28 Caps)
Jake Ball (Scarlets) (49 Caps)
Adam Beard (Ospreys) (21 Caps)
Alun Wyn Jones (Ospreys) (143 Caps)
Will Rowlands (Wasps) (5 Caps)
Cory Hill (Cardiff Blues) (29 Caps)
Dan Lydiate (Ospreys) (62 Caps)
Josh Navidi (Cardiff Blues) (24 Caps)
Aaron Wainwright (Dragons) (27 Caps)
Taulupe Faletau (Bath) (81 Caps)
Josh MacLeod (Scarlets) (*Uncapped)
Justin Tipuric (Ospreys) (80 Caps)
Gareth Davies (Scarlets) (57 Caps)
Tomos Williams (Cardiff Blues) (20 Caps)
Kieran Hardy (Scarlets) (2 Caps)
Dan Biggar (Northampton Saints) (87 Caps)
Callum Sheedy (Bristol Bears) (4 Caps)
Jarrod Evans (Cardiff Blues) (6 Caps)
Johnny Williams (Scarlets) (2 Caps)
Jonathan Davies (Scarlets) (85 Caps)
Nick Tompkins (Dragons) (8 Caps)
Owen Watkin (Ospreys) (25 Caps)
George North (Ospreys) (98 Caps)
Josh Adams (Cardiff Blues) (29 Caps)
Hallam Amos (Cardiff Blues) (22 Caps)
Louis Rees-Zammit (Gloucester) (4 Caps)
Leigh Halfpenny (Scarlets) (93 Caps)
Liam Williams (Scarlets) (67 Caps)
Players unavailable for selection due to injury:
Rob Evans, Nicky Smith, Samson Lee, Ross Moriarty, James Davies, Ellis Jenkins, Gareth Anscombe, Rhys Patchell, Scott Williams, Jonah Holmes.