France have chosen a new-look half-back partnership of Pierre Mignoni and David Skrela for their RBS 6 Nations Championship opener against Italy in Rome's Stadio Flaminio on Saturday.
Clermont-Auvergne's Mignoni gets the nod over regular Les Bleus scrum-half Dimitri Yachvili, while Stade Francais fly-half Skrela returns to the team almost six years after his last appearance for his country.
Raphael Ibanez, of English side Wasps, is preferred to fellow hooker Dimitri Szarzewski and will captain the side in the absence of long-time skipper Fabien Pelous, who is out injured.
And number eight Sebastien Chabal will play his first game for France since November 2005 after being selected on the back of some superb recent performances for English champions Sale Sharks.
Bourgoin's Julien Bonnaire is named in the starting XV despite concerns about an ankle injury he sustained on Saturday, but versatile back Damien Traille does not even make the bench after suffering a knock on club duty with Biarritz at the weekend.
Lionel Beauxis, who competes with Skrela for the fly-half berth at Stade Francais, has been drafted into the squad and starts on the bench.
Wales' acting head coach Rob Howley has given Sam Davies and Rory Thornton a boost ahead of the RBS 6 Nations by naming the uncapped Ospreys duo in his largely experienced squad for the Autumn Internationals.