Prop Paddy McAllister is set to make his first competitive start in a Connacht jersey for the away clash against Scarlets for the opening round of the Guinness Pro14 on Saturday (k/o 5.15pm).
McAllister, who signed from Gloucester in the summer, made his debut in Connacht's pre-season friendly win over against Munster at The Sportsground last Saturday.
He joins an experienced front row that includes tighthead Finlay Bealham and hooker Tom McCartney. Behind them will be Gavin Thornbury and Quinn Roux, both of whom impressed in Connacht’s three pre-season wins.
Captain Jarrad Butler will wear the now familiar number 8 jersey in a back row alongside Eoghan Masterson and Colby Fainga’a at blindside and openside respectively.
With Jack Carty away on international duty at the Rugby World Cup, Conor Fitzgerald is named at out-half alongside scrum-half Caolin Blade. Elsewhere in the back line, Tom Daly and Kyle Godwin will form the centre partnership with wingers Matt Healy and Stephen Fitzgerald and full-back Tiernan O’Halloran completing the side.
Ross Molony will captain Leinster, partnered by Devin Toner in the second row, for the trip to Benetton Rugby (5.15pm).
The front row of Peter Dooley, Rónan Kelleher and Michael Bent that started the pre-season friendly win away to Northampton Saints earlier this month is retained.
A back row of Max Deegan, Will Connors and Caelan Doris completes the pack.Ross Byrne and Jamison Gibson-Park will form Leinster's half-back pairing.
Jimmy O'Brien starts at full-back while the experience of Dave Kearney and Adam Byrne on the wings completes the back three, with Rory O'Loughlin and Joe Tomane combining in the centre.
Munster coach Johann van Graan has named six forwards on his bench for their league opener against Dragons at Thomond Park.
Billy Holland captains the team, with JJ Hanrahan at 10 and Tyler Bleyendaal in the centre alongside Rory Scannell.
Connacht (v Scarlets): Tiernan O’Halloran; Stephen Fitzgerald, Kyle Godwin, Tom Daly, Matt Healy; Conor Fitzgerald, Caolin Blade; Paddy McAllister, Tom McCartney, Finlay Bealham; Gavin Thornbury, Quinn Roux; Eoghan Masterson, Colby Fainga’a, Jarrad Butler (capt).
Replacements: Shane Delahunt, Denis Buckley, Dominic Robertson-McCoy, Ultan Dillane, Eoin McKeon, Kieran Marmion, Peter Robb, Darragh Leader.
Leinster (v Benetton): Jimmy O'Brien; Adam Byrne, Rory O'Loughlin, Joe Tomane, Dave Kearney; Ross Byrne, Jamison Gibson-Park; Peter Dooley, Rónan Kelleher, Michael Bent; Ross Molony (capt), Devin Toner; Max Deegan, Will Connors, Caelan Doris.
Replacements: James Tracy, Michael Milne, Vakh Abdaladze, Josh Murphy, Scott Penny, Hugh O'Sullivan, Harry Byrne, Hugo Keenan (5)
Munster (v Dragons): Mike Haley; Darren Sweetnam, Rory Scannell, Tyler Bleyendaal; Shane Daly; JJ Hanrahan, Nick McCarthy; Jeremy Loughman, Kevin O'Byrne, Stephen Archer; Fineen Wycherley, Billy Holland (C); Jack O’Donoghue, Tommy O’Donnell, Arno Botha.
Replacements: Diarmuid Barron, James Cronin, Keynan Knox, Darren O’Shea, Chris Cloete, Alby Mathewson, Liam Coombes, Jack O’Sullivan.