Treviso fly-half Alberto Di Bernardo will make his Italy debut in Saturday's Test against South Africa in Durban.
The 32-year-old has been rewarded for a fine season and replaces another Argentina-born No 10, Luciano Orquera, for the Kings Park Stadium clash.
Orquera drops to the bench while Di Bernardo, who kicked 114 points last season, will partner Treviso teammate Edoardo Gori at half-back.
Having recently captained the Barbarians, No 8 Serio Parisse skippers the Azzurri, with flankers Alessandro Zanni and Robert Barbieri forming an impressive back row.
Lock and former captain Marco Bortolami returns to the line-up after a year out following a shoulder injury, with tighthead Lorenzo Cittadini preferred to Martin Castrogiovanni, who is among the replacements.
Italy: 15 Andrea Masi, 14 Giovanbattista Venditti, 13 Luca Morisi, 12 Alberto Sgarbi, 11 Luke Mclean, 10 Alberto Di Bernardo, 9 Edoardo Gori; 1 Alberto De Marchi, 2 Leonardo Ghiraldini, 3 Lorenzo Cittadini, 4 Antonio Pavanello, 5 Marco Bortolami, 6 Alessandro Zanni, 7 Robert Barbieri, 8 Sergio Parisse (c).
Replacements: 16 Davide Giazzon, 17 Matias Aguero, 18 Martin Castrogiovanni, 19 Valerio Bernabo, 20 Joshua Furno, 21 Tobias Botes, 22 Luciano Orquera, 23 Tommaso Iannone.