Also included in the extended Munster squad is winger Ian Dowling. A stomach bug forced the Kilkenny man out of Munster's starting line-up last Saturday, just hours before kick-off, with Brian Carney taking his place.
In the 27-man selection, full-back Shaun Payne is the fifth player included that did not have any involvement against Ulster.
Speaking ahead of Friday's encounter, Munster coach Declan Kidney said: "We are obviously pleased to be able to name them (the returning players) in the squad, and now it's a case of seeing how they come out of that training session today before we finalise the side tomorrow. We're hopeful that Rua will take some part in the game on Friday.
"Leinster needed a late converted try to win here last time. So we're expecting more of the same. It's never an easy place to get something out of."
MUNSTER Squad (v Connacht): Forwards (15) - Marcus Horan, Jerry Flannery, Frankie Sheahan, John Hayes, Tony Buckley, Mick O'Driscoll, Donncha O'Callaghan, Paul O'Connell (capt), Donnacha Ryan, Alan Quinlan, Denis Leamy, David Wallace, Neil Ronan, James Coughlan, Anthony Foley.
Backs (12) - Denis Hurley, Shaun Payne, Ian Dowling, Doug Howlett, Rua Tipoki, Kieran Lewis, Lifeimi Mafi, Brian Carney, Paul Warwick, Ronan O'Gara, Tomas O'Leary, Peter Stringer.