JOSH Adams has been left “gutted” after being dropped from Wales’ squad over a ruling for England-based players.

The Worcester Warriors star was hoping to add to his two caps won at this year’s Six Nations after being selected for the summer tour.

But as Wales’ first Test against South Africa takes places on Saturday, June 2 the clash sits outside World Rugby’s international window which begins on the weekend of June 9 and runs until June 24.

And Premiership Rugby which represents the English top-flight clubs has refused to release Adams for the fixture.

The 23-year-old would be eligible to play in Wales’ two Tests against Argentina on Saturday, June 9 and Saturday, June 16.

But head coach Warren Gatland has decided to let the Premiership’s joint-top try-scorer go as he would not be available for the entire tour.

Gatland has also released Bath lock Luke Charteris and Exeter Chiefs prop Tomas Francis as they find themselves in the same situation.

Northampton Saints wing George North and Gloucester back rower Ross Moriarty are expected to remain in the squad as they are joining Welsh regions Ospreys and Dragons this summer.

Ospreys prop Rhodri Jones and Dragons duo Ashton Hewitt and Aaron Wainwright have been called up to replace Charteris, Francis and Adams.

It is a big blow for Swansea-born Adams who will have dreams of representing his country in the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

Dragons fly-half Dorian Jones, who was on loan at Worcester in the 2017-18 season, expressed his disappointment for his former team-mate on Twitter.

“Gutted for @JoshAdams951,” said Jones.

“Nobody deserves to go on Wales tour more than him! @avivapremrugby top try scorer and been on fire all season for @WorcsWarriors.”

Responding to Jones’ Tweet, Adams said: “Thanks buddy appreciate it. Gutted."

In a statement from the Welsh Rugby Union, national boss Gatland said it was a “shame” supporters would not be able to see Adams, Charteris and Francis in action.

"We are really disappointed that Josh, Tomas and Luke have to miss out on the opportunity to tour with Wales and play international rugby this summer,” Gatland said.

"It was a great opportunity for them to play for their country, press their claim in an important year and it is a shame supporters will not get to see them in the red of Wales.

"The situation is very clear for players playing in England going forward and heading into a Rugby World Cup year.

"With the players unavailable to link up with the squad until the week of our second test match we have had to replace them in the squad."

A Premiership Rugby spokesman said: “The policy of the Premiership Rugby clubs is to comply with World Rugby Regulation 9, and only release players for Test matches inside the official Test window."