LLOYD Burns could cap a whirlwind year by going from building site to representing Wales against the Barbarians at the Millennium Stadium.

The 26-year-old hooker was yesterday selected in a 24-man squad by coach Warren Gatland along with his Newport Gwent Dragons teammates Toby Faletau, Aled Brew, Luke Charteris and Dan Lydiate.

Burns learned of his call up by text on Monday and if selected it will cap a dream 24 hours with the Cross Keys man getting married in New Inn the day before the Millennium Stadium clash with a Wales cap to go with the ring on his finger.

He is one of three hookers named in the squad with the Ospreys pair of Richard Hibbard and Huw Bennett his competition for the two spots in the matchday 22.

It has been a remarkable season for Pontypool native Burns, a former back row forward who this time last year was captaining Cross Keys in the Premiership and working as a bricklayer.

The Pandy Park outfit still holds his registration but it was with the Dragons that he shone this season, playing 26 times for the region and impressing with his aggression with energy.

Now he gets the chance to impress Gatland at close quarters and if he manages that then he could force his way into the reckoning for September’s World Cup in New Zealand.

"I am still in shock. I didn’t expect it and I am chuffed to bits," said Burns, who hasn’t represented Wales since playing as a flanker for the Under 16s.

"It’s just amazing and my phone has been going non-stop with calls from friends, family and teammates from Keys and the Dragons.

"I had a good season and I think my performances in the derby games at the end of the season probably convinced them to give me a go.

"Now I have the chance to try and show the coaches that I deserve a place against the Baa-Baas but it will be amazing just to be involved with the international squad.

"Getting called-up for Wales is something that I have always wanted but I didn’t expect it to happen, especially not so soon after getting into the Dragons squad."

"We are over the moon and it is fantastic for him," said Keys head coach Greg Woods. "We are really proud as a club and he is a perfect role model for players in the Premiership.

"He didn’t get international age-grade recognition, he didn’t come through an academy and he has had plenty of knock-backs.

"He had to do it the hard way but kept his head down and grafted, he’s a lesson to anyone.

"He came to Keys to learn the position of hooker and his ability always shone through, time and time again he was the stand-out forward on the pitch. He has worked so hard and now he is getting the rewards."