The 29-year-old New Zealander partners Brian O'Meara at half-back, with Guy Easterby dropping to the bench.
Brian O'Driscoll partners Felipe Contepomi who moves in from out-half, while Girvan Dempsey will also make his first start of the season.
Dempsey comes in for Denis Hickie who is named amongst a strong replacement line-up alongside Ricky Nebbett, Shane Jennings, Ben Gissing and hooker Brian Blaney.
Emmett Byrne returns to the front-row for Nebbett, while there are also starts for the recalled Leo Cullen and Aidan McCullen.
Coach Declan Kidney has also left a vacancy amongst the back replacements which will be confirmed closer to the game.Leinster: 15: Girvan Dempsey14: Shane Horgan13: Brian O'Driscoll12: Felipe Contepomi11: Gary Brown10: David Holwell9: Brian O'Meara 1: Reggie Corrigan (Captain)2: Shane Byrne