Dan Lydiate may be plying his trade in the Top 14 this season, but he has no intention of letting this impact his international future.
The 26-year-old has swapped the Newport Gwent Dragons for Racing Metro and while no longer turning out for a Welsh region, the flanker is hopeful of maintaining his spot in the Welsh national team.
However, the Lions man admits that not playing in the RaboDirect PRO12 could count against him.
"Obviously you are maybe at a slight disadvantage because the coach is not able to watch you every week but I just hope if I am playing well enough they'll still pick me," he said.
"It's a massive onus on myself to make sure I am playing well out here.
"If Racing are successful as well there's a bigger chance I'll still be selected for Wales. I spoke to Warren [Gatland] before coming out here to make sure I was still available for Wales."
Racing have boosted their squad ahead of the new season with the signing of among others Lydiate and his Lions team-mates Jonathan Sexton and Jamie Roberts. Lydiate is hopeful that he'll be able to help the Paris outfit to glory in the Heineken Cup and in the Top 14.
"In the last few seasons Racing have got to the knockout stages of the Heineken Cup and this year's no different," he said,
"We want to be there at the end of the season. I am really excited about playing in the Heineken Cup."