10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations match in February, while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
Leinster could turn over Ulster for the fifth time on the trot tonight and if they do so, no man would be prouder than the province's veteran prop Reggie Corrigan.
The Greystones front rower, who made his senior provincial debut against Ulster back in August 1997, has been a fixture in the Leinster pack over the past nine years.
Tonight in Belfast, Corrigan should represent his province for the 127th time, enabling him to join his good friend Victor Costello, the retired number eight, as Leinster's second most-capped player. Only hooker Shane Byrne, now at Saracens, has made more appearances (135) than the pair.
And nothing would please the likeable loosehead more than victory at a packed-out Ravenhill.
With a win by any margin sending Leinster top of the Magners League table, Corrigan said: "We know that we're going to face a real battle up in Ravenhill.
"Even though Ulster have received greater international recognition recently, there is a core group of players there who have helped form a good strong unit. Rest assured, we won't have any fear going up there but we will certainly respect them."
It is almost five years to the day that Corrigan, who recently turned 36, lifted the Celtic League trophy aloft after Leinster's titanic 24-20 final win over Munster at Lansdowne Road.
Great memories, but there could be more down the line if Leinster can keep themselves on a winning path over the next five weeks - back-to-back Heineken Cup clashes against Agen are followed by league duels with Munster and Ulster again.
Corrigan, who has captained Leinster over four seasons, is too streetwise to allow his younger team-mates look beyond tonight's mouth-watering encounter, but their considerable travelling support will tell you that Michael Cheika's men are going in the right direction.
"It's an advantage travelling to Ravenhill as an Irish side because it's not as intimidating as you're so familiar with the players you're playing against.
"You're playing against your peers, one time international team-mates and you're always looking to put one over your opposite number - that adds a bit of spice to the occasion," Corrigan added.
"Over the next few weeks you'll certainly see the squad system in use. We're all conscious of the fact that there are injuries in the squad so we all need to take responsibility.
"There's talk of three bus loads of supporters travelling up for the game - and that doesn't even include those going up by train and driving independently - so that will give us another boost.
"I remember a time that you'd go up to Ravenhill and you wouldn't hear a peep out of anyone as the crowds wouldn't be near the same what they are now! Saturday should be a sell-out and we all appreciate the sacrifice that our loyal supporters make."