Veteran halfback Morgan Parra returns from three years in the international rugby wilderness in an experimental France team named to face the All Blacks in Auckland.
Parra is the most experienced player named by coach Jacques Brunel for the first of three Tests on Saturday.
However, the versatile 66-Test veteran hasn’t played since Les Bleus were walloped 62-13 by New Zealand in the quarter-finals of the 2015 World Cup in Cardiff.
The last time Parra ran onto Eden Park was when he was five-eighth in the 2011 World Cup final loss, also to New Zealand.
Veteran fullback Maxime Medard is back after two years away and lock Yoann Maestri ends a year’s absence as Brunel chose to mix a smattering of veterans among a host of relatively new faces.
Only four players have regained their places in the starting line-up that lost to Wales in Cardiff in the last Test, which completed a mediocre Six Nations campaign.
The most notable of them is outside centre Mathieu Bastareaud, who is promoted to captain in place of Guilhem Guirado.
Hooker Guirado is among a handful of proven performers not selected for the tour as Brunel assesses his options ahead of next year’s World Cup.
Camille Chat starts at hooker for the first time, having made 11 bench appearances. Prop Dany Priso is also making a maiden start.
The biggest surprise is the selection of 22-year-old Clermont flanker Judicael Cancoriet for his fourth Test.
Cancoriet wasn’t included in Brunel’s original tour party and only arrived in Auckland as cover for Montpellier’s Kellian Galletier, who was unavailable for the first Test because of his involvement in last weekend’s Top 14 club final.
FRANCE: Maxime Medard, Teddy Thomas, Mathieu Bastareaud (capt), Geoffrey Doumayrou, Remy Grosso, Anthony Belleau, Morgan Parra, Kevin Gourdon, Febien Sanconnie, Judicael Cancoriet, Yoann Maestri, Paul Gabrillagues, Uini Atonio, Camille Chat, Dany Priso. Res: Adrien Pelissie, Cyril Baille, Rabah Slimani, Bernard Le Roux, Alexandre Lapandry, Baptiste Serin, Jules Plisson, Gael Fickou.