Sir Clive Woodward has confirmed his squad for the summer's British Lions tour, with Ireland's Brian O'Driscoll leading the side.
Gloucester's Phil Vickery, Newcastle's Jonny Wilkinson, and new Kingsholm recruit Mike Tindall all missed out.
Commenting exclusively on http://www.gloucesterrugbyclub.com/ after Monday morning's training session at Kingsholm, Vickery said: "It's a privilege to have gone on a Lions tour back in 2001. Realistically, you can't expect to be picked if you haven't been playing. If I'm honest then it's the right call."
28 year-old Vickery has had an injury-hit season with his recovery from back surgery followed by a blow-out fracture around his eye, and now a broken arm.
"The Lions will need players who are 100 per cent fit, and there are a few in my position. I have to get back playing for Gloucester, and that is first and foremost on my mind."
Despite not being listed in the 44-man squad, Woodward still offered Vickery, Wilkinson and Tindall a slight chance to still travel to New Zealand.
"If they confirm genuine form and fitness in the coming weeks, they could still go," said Woodward.
"My thinking is it is better they try to do so with their clubs before becoming part of the Lions squad.
"At their very best and fully fit, all three would have made the squad. And their absence from today's list does not necessarily rule them out from the tour. I have spoken to the players, and they agree with this approach."
As expected, Ireland's Brian O'Driscoll has been appointed captain, and there are places for England World Cup stalwarts Neil Back, Lawrence Dallaglio and Richard Hill.
Leicester flanker Back, 36, becomes the oldest player in Lions history selected for an original tour squad.
Several young England prospects have also received the nod, including Leicester centre Ollie Smith, Sale front-row forwards Andy Titterrell and Andrew Sheridan and Bath prop Matt Stevens.
O'Driscoll heads a strong Irish contingent, while RBS 6 Nations champions Wales have 10 Lions, but struggling Scotland are confined to scrum-half Chris Cusiter, hooker Gordon Bulloch and back-row forward Simon Taylor.
The Lions leave for New Zealand on May 25, with the first Test against New Zealand scheduled for Christchurch a month later.
British and Irish Lions squad to tour New Zealand this summer:
Backs: I Balshaw (England and Leeds), G Murphy (Ireland and Leinster), J Robinson (England and Sale Sharks), G Thomas (Wales and Toulouse), S Williams (Wales and Neath-Swansea Ospreys), J Lewsey (England and Wasps), S Horgan (Ireland and Leinster), D Hickie (Ireland and Leinster), T Shanklin (Wales and Cardiff Blues), B O'Driscoll (Ireland and Leinster, capt), G Henson (Wales and Neath-Swansea Ospreys), O Smith (England and Leicester), G D'Arcy (Ireland and Leinster), W Greenwood (England and Harlequins), S Jones (Wales and Clermont Auvergne), R O'Gara (Ireland and Munster), C Hodgson (England and Sale Sharks), M Dawson (England and Wasps), D Peel (Wales and Llanelli Scarlets), G Cooper (Wales and Newport Gwent Dragons), C Cusiter (Scotland and Borders).
G Rowntree (England and Leicester), A Sheridan (England and Sale Sharks), M Stevens (England and Bath), G Jenkins (Wales and Cardiff Blues), J White (England and Leicester), J Hayes (Ireland and Munster), G Bulloch (Scotland and Glasgow), S Thompson (England and Northampton), A Titterrell (England and Sale Sharks), S Byrne (Ireland and Leinster), D Grewcock (England and Bath), B Kay (England and Leicester), M O'Kelly (Ireland and Leinster), D O'Callaghan (Ireland and Munster), P O'Connell (Ireland and Munster), M Owen (Wales and Newport Gwent Dragons), R Hill (England and Saracens), N Back (England and Leicester), M Williams (Wales and Cardiff Blues), L Moody (England and Leicester), S Taylor (Scotland and Edinburgh), M Corry (England and Leicester), L Dallaglio (England and Wasps)
Gloucester meet the Exeter Chiefs for the fourth time in competitive action this weekend, this time in the semi-final of the European Rugby Challenge Cup. Director of Rugby David Humphreys told the local media this week that this is the sort of game that Gloucester want to be involved in on a regular basis and that he and his team are looking forward to it.
Following the 29-26 loss to Harlequins, club captain Billy Twelvetrees spoke of his disappointment that the Cherry and Whites were unable to cash in on the home side's indiscipline and lose a lead on Saturday afternoon.
Number eight Gareth Evans admitted to a collective feeling of frustration as Gloucester lost narrowly at Harlequins on Saturday, but insisted that there are plenty of positives to draw upon ahead of next Saturday's European Rugby Challenge Cup semi-final at home to Exeter.
Gloucester travel to the Stoop on Saturday afternoon to take on Harlequins in the Aviva Premiership. The Cherry and Whites make just two changes from last weekend's win over Connacht as they seek consistency and continuity in their play as Nick Walshe told the local media this week.
Speaking to GRTV after the final whistle, Tom Palmer praised the Cherry and Whites concentration and desire to hold on to a narrow 14-7 victory. The second row topped the tackle charts with 19 as he led the home team's resistance.
Supporters who are still to purchase tickets for Saturday's European Rugby Challenge Cup semi-final at home to Exeter Chiefs at Kingsholm (kick off 7:45pm) are reminded that Early Bird prices are only valid until 6:30pm on Thursday evening.
The Gloucester Wheelchair Rugby team travelled to Fenton Manor Complex, Stoke on Trent last Saturday to take part in the final round of the GBWR Super Series of the season, knowing just one win would be enough to crown them Division 3 Champions.