Chris Horsman has revealed his devastation after being withdrawn from Wales' squad which drew 29-29 with Australia last weekend.
The Worcester prop was originally named as a replacement but Wales were forced to withdraw him after talks with Premier Rugby Limited - the English clubs' umbrella organisation - failed to secure his release.
The Wallaby clash was out-side the official international window, which meant clubs were not obliged to release players.
Wales did strike a deal with Worcester, which would have resulted in Horsman being made available to his club for two weekends this month, but Premier Rugby refused to sanction the agreement.
So, having selected the 28-year-old on the bench, Wales had to hurriedly remove him and replace him with Gavin Thomas.
It was another blow for the four-cap tighthead who has so far had a 2006 to forget, having been sidelined for much of the year with an ankle injury.
"I was absolutely gutted," said Horsman, speaking for the first time since the club-country issue affected him.
"The politics of it is beyond repair. As a player, you are employed by your club. You want to do well for them and the next thing is you want to play for Wales.
"I've been stopped from playing rugby for various reasons, like injuries and cancer and to be caught up in something like that, which I had no control over, was devastating.
"To be here at the start of last week and being involved in some of the build-up and then having to go back was upsetting.
"But it wasn't the club's fault. It was just one of those things. You are a professional and you go back to your club and do what you are paid to do."
Instead of being involved with Wales in Cardiff last Saturday, Horsman suddenly found himself playing for Worcester in their 40-21 Premiership defeat to Leicester at Welford Road.
But now Horsman is available for the remainder of Wales' autumn internationals against the Pacific Islands this Saturday, Canada (November 17) and New Zealand (November 25).
It is likely that the Warriors star will be named in the starting line-up against the Islanders.
He said: "It doesn't come any better than this. Three chances to play for Wales are as big a carrot as you need.
"I've got my form and my fitness back and now I've got another challenge. The front-row boys did an excellent job at the weekend and if I get my opportunity, I've got to step up and show what I can do.
"The competition in the front row is fantastic at the moment and it's bringing the best out of the boys.
"Look at the way Gethin Jenkins is playing now and Adam Jones is playing fantastically so if Duncan Jones and I get a chance, we have got to raise the bar again, but it's very friendly competition."
On the challenge of facing the physical strength of the Pacific Islanders, Horsman said: "We know what we are coming up against on Saturday - they are a very physical, very proud, very passionate, group of players.
"People like the Fijian players have a tough time trying to get funding and they are going to be out to prove a point.
"It's going to be a very hard, physical, game and they are going to be very professional."
Horsman knows Wales are going to have to display similar character to that they showed in their recovery to draw with the Wallabies last weekend.
He said: "The way the boys came back on Saturday was fantastic because Australia are renowned as one of the most resilient sides in world rugby - the hardest side to beat.
"To lose those points in the first 20 minutes and come back in our first game against a side that was pretty battle-hardened after the TriNations was excellent." n Andrew Higgins has signed a new deal with Bath, keeping him with the Premiership team until the end of the 2009-10 season.
The 25-year-old, who joined from Bristol in 2003 having begun his career with Worcester Warriors, has made more than 60 appearances - either on the wing or at centre.
Meanwhile, South African second-rower Hottie Louw has signed for Bath until the end of the season.
The 30-year-old has been playing for the Blue Bulls during their Currie Cup campaign but joined them on loan from Llanelli Scarlets, for whom he signed in February 2005.
Louw, who played for the Springboks three times in 2002, previously played for Clermont Auvergne in France.