TOULON-BOUND Rhys Webb is poised to become a victim of a change to Wales’ selection policy.

The Welsh Rugby Union have announced that they have ditched the so-called ‘Gatland’s Law’ that was put in place to try and stop the player drain to England and France.

Brought in three years ago, it gave head coach Warren Gatland a number of wildcard picks for individuals plying their trade outside of Wales.

However, it was a complex policy that came with a number of caveats and failed to stem the flow of players to the Aviva Premiership and Top 14.

It has led to the WRU instead bringing in a new rule that will see players who have 60 caps or more permitted to leave Wales and still be eligible for the national team.

There are NO wildcards and the only exception comes for uncapped players currently outside of Wales – to keep their eligibility the new cap will have to return when their contract at the point of call-up expires.

The policy comes into place immediately and will bite when current contracts end – meaning trouble for Webb.

The Lions scrum-half has just 28 caps to his name and is leaving the Ospreys for Toulon next summer, meaning his international career will be put on hold.

It also means Ross Moriarty, who has 17 Test appearances, will have to head to Wales from Gloucester at the end of his deal that expires in the summer.

Webb's half-back partner Dan Biggar needs four more caps before joining Northampton next season.

"For me as a national coach, if I was being totally selfish then no I wouldn't have a policy," Gatland said.

"But it's not about what's best for me and the national team, it's about what's best for Welsh rugby.

"The best thing for Welsh rugby and for the Union to support the regions is how do we try and keep a number of the best players in Wales for as long as we possibly can.

"But we know we're under pressure from market forces."

“The policy published in 2014 has played an important role in incentivising our rugby talent to remain in, or return to, our regional game,” said WRU chief executive Martyn Phillips.

“But we have spent a significant amount of time with national team management and the regions evaluating its merits.

“Our role is to ensure that any selection policy is ‘fit for purpose’, achieves our collective aims and works for the greater good of the whole of Welsh rugby.

“We have decided to makes these changes to protect the ‘investment’ made by Welsh rugby - by our coaches, supporters, clubs, communities and fellow team members - in those individuals who rise to the top and make it to international rugby.

“We have established a clear incentive for those players approaching the prime of their rugby playing careers to stay in Wales and it is now there in black and white for everyone to see.

“The revamped policy will be reviewed periodically but, fundamentally, if you have less than 60 caps and you leave Wales then you won’t be selected by your country again until you return.

“In the spirit of absolute fairness we will start anew from Monday 16th October 2017 and give those players who have existing contracts outside of Wales the chance to come back on completion of those contracts, before this new policy effects them.

“We also recognise that players will reach a stage in their careers when the draw of an overseas contract may become overwhelming.

“For those players who have played 60-times or more for Wales we believe that they have already returned the financial, emotional and practical investment made in them by everyone involved in Welsh rugby and, although best efforts will also be made to keep players who fall into this category, they will not be penalised in recognition of the loyalty and application they will have exhibited to reach this stage in their careers.

“We will still do as much as possible to retain this talent, but it is conceded that this standard of player deserves to still be considered for selection and is potentially making an invaluable contribution to the national cause.”