WELSH Rugby Union chairman Gareth Davies says “the wheels came off” Project Reset this week, forcing plans for a region in the north to be put on the back burner.

A merger between the Ospreys and Scarlets was expected to be rubber-stamped on Tuesday with a new professional team set up in Colwyn Bay for next season and Cardiff Blues and the WRU-owned Dragons continuing as they are.

However, the Liberty Stadium side pulled the plug on that move – and then made accusations of a “stitch-up” in a fiery press statement – and the men from Llanelli confirmed that the proposal is now “off the table”.

READ MORE: The ramifications of Project Reset and the ongoing turmoil of regional rugby for the Dragons

The uncertainty has impacted on preparations for the Six Nations, while a raft of players are still waiting to sign contracts for next season.

Davies, who left his role as Dragons chief executive to become the governing body’s chairman, expects things to remain as they are for next season.

"It's at the moment probably back to where we were in terms of the four regional entities unless something drastic happens over the next few weeks," he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

A merger between the Ospreys and Blues had also been discussed as part of Project Reset and a 2+2 funding model, with two regions having bigger budgets, remains the most likely way forward for Welsh professional rugby in a bid to close the gap on Irish, French and English clubs.

However, last week’s developments have thrown a spanner in the works with the Ospreys demanding a full rethink of the process.

"Politics reign supreme in Welsh rugby, it was always thus. It's been a tough week for everybody," said former Wales fly-half Davies.

"The new Professional Rugby Board has been working quite hard and quite positively over the past 12 or 15 months to try and look at the structure and decide on a way forward.

"Things seemed to be moving in the right direction, with the four regions sort of in agreement up until this week in terms of direction of travel.

"This week the wheels came off, as it were."