For England, it is their 2011 defeat in Dublin, when tries from O'Driscoll and Tommy Bowe sealed a 24-8 win for Ireland and denied Martin Johnson's side the Grand Slam.
For Ireland, it's last year's hefty 30-9 loss at Twickenham when their front row was run ragged by England's, particularly after Mike Ross left the fray through injury.
Ireland insist that they have proved they can scrum with the best of them since and are buoyed from last weekend's first half performance in the 30-22 win in Wales.
Stuart Lancaster's confidence in his England side is made evident by his decision to resist the temptation to throw Tuilagi back into his side, opting instead to reward Twelvetrees with a second cap after his fine debut in the 38-18 win over Scotland.
And Lancaster is relishing the chance to let Tuilagi loose from the bench.
"We were pleased with our intent to play against Scotland," he said.
"A lot of the players performed very well and with Manu coming back into the equation it gave us some selection decisions.
"But with the centres playing well last week and Manu still returning to match fitness, having not played for the last four weeks, he and others will give us great options from the bench in what I am sure will be a physical encounter."
With Twelvetrees keeping his place, Lancaster has made just one change to the side that defeated Scotland with Ben Morgan forced out with an ankle injury.
Tom Wood moves from blindside flanker to No.8 while James Haskell comes in for his first RBS 6 Nations start since 2011.
Ireland meanwhile, are unchanged from the side that romped into a 30-3 lead after 45 minutes at the Millennium Stadium before departing with the victory despite a second half spent largely with their backs against the wall.
It means Gordon D'Arcy, Ross, Rob Kearney, Peter O'Mahony, Sean O'Brien and Keith Earls have all shrugged off knocks and are fit to take part in what will be Brian O'Driscoll's 57th Championship start - a new record.
"I expect Sunday's game to be another level up as both teams have a game under their belt," said Ireland head coach Declan Kidney.
"The players have recovered pretty well from the Wales game. We took 48 hours off after the match and have toned down training since.
"Gordon, Peter and Sean all trained fully this morning so we don't envisage there being any changes."