The decision to nominate O'Driscoll as captain was made according to team manager Brian O'Brien with a view to the future.
The Irish selectors have left a vacancy on the side because of the injury to Denis Hickie but they have said that they are optimistic that Hickie will be fit and will leave it until later in the week, probably Thursday, before making a final decision.
Victor Costello returns to the side after a long absence although he has been asked to play in the unfamiliar role of blindside flanker.
Ireland. G Dempsey; S Horgan, B O'Driscoll (capt), K Maggs, AN Other; R O'Gara, P Stringer; R Corrigan, S Byrne, J Hayes; G Longwell, M O'Kelly; V Costello, K Gleeson, A Foley.
Replacements: F Sheahan, P Wallace, L Cullen, A Quinlan, G Easterby, D Humphreys, AN Other.