Cork hurling manager Kieran Kingston has wielded the axe ahead of the Munster SHC.
Former captains Shane O'Neill and Patrick Cronin have both been cut from the squad along with Paudie O'Sullivan, Cian McCarthy and Stephen Moylan.
It has been reported that O'Sullivan told Kingston and his management team that he wants to take some time away from inter-county hurling, while McCarthy is understood to have made the decision to quit the panel due to work commitments.
None of the five players were involved in Sunday's relegation play-off against Galway and it appears as though they will play no part in the Munster SHC.
"It’s a ruthless call, certainly and you’d feel sorry for the players, who have given great service," former Cork hurling captain Ger Fitzgerald is quoted as saying in the Irish Examiner.
"After the league campaign, the management probably felt they had the licence to make a decision like that but then you’d say those players mightn’t have played worse than any other.
"It’s probably part of a change of approach and you’d have to trust the management have made the decision they feel best serves Cork hurling."