WALES speedster Jonah Holmes has moved closer to becoming a Dragons player after being released from the final year of his contract with Leicester.

The 27-year-old wing/full-back has been in talks with the Welsh Rugby Union over making the move from the Tigers.

On Wednesday afternoon national boss Wayne Pivac said that he had urged the three-times capped international to move to Wales, either this summer or after seeing out the season at Welford Road.

“I’d like to see him in Wales, which would help his selection and also the squad because if he’s not then he’s returning to England in fallow weeks,” said Pivac, who named Holmes in his Six Nations squad but plumped for Leigh Halfpenny, George North, Josh Adams, Liam Williams and Johnny McNicholl in his back three selections.

In the evening Leicester announced that they had agreed to release the winger, who scored 24 tries in 45 outings in the East Midlands.

South Wales Argus:

Holmes added: “I want to thank the club and supporters for everything during my time at Tigers, I have enjoyed the opportunity to represent Leicester.

“The decision was not one I took lightly and, while I will miss representing Leicester Tigers, I am excited for what is ahead for me in my next chapter.”

Holmes will now become one of Pivac’s 38 nominated Test players, taking the spot that was earmarked for Japan-bound Hadleigh Parkes. That means that the WRU will pay 80 per cent of his wages.

“His progression in Leicester, since arriving from the Championship, to international has been well earned and, at his request, we have chosen not to stand in the way of Jonah’s move to Wales to further his Test career,” said Tigers director of rugby Geordan Murphy.

Holmes will boost Dragons’ boss Dean Ryan’s back three, joining Jordan Williams, Ashton Hewitt, Jared Rosser, Owen Jenkins, Rio Dyer and Will Talbot-Davies as a senior option.