There is also one change to the Munster bench with Federico Pucciariello returning to the match day squad having missed the game in Newport and the Celtic League loss to Ulster.
Payne's last outing was against Castres in Thomond Park and he then suffered a bout of pneumonia that ruled him out for the games against Ulster and Dragons.
Meanwhile, The Dragons have, as expected included internationals Kevin Morgan and Hal Luscombe in their squad for the trip to Limerick. Both trained all week, Morgan has recovered from an ankle injury and Luscombe from a thumb injury.
Morgan has been namedon the bench anlong with surprisingly, Lion Michael Owen, but Luscombe has been paired in the centre with Jon Bryant.
Luscombe looking forward to getting back into action said, It has been a frustrating time for me to be out injured especially as it happened at the start of our Heineken Cup campaign, however, I am delighted to be fit again and available for selection. Training has gone well all week and I cannot wait for the chance to play again and make a valuable contribution to the team. There is tremendous team spirit among the squad with everyone playing for each other and to be a part of that is something very special. We travel to Thomond Park with confidence and having watched from the side lines for the last two months there is no need to hit the panic button as there are only a few areas that are letting us down.
Munster: S Payne; J Kelly, G Connolly, T Halstead, A Horgan; R O'Gara, P Stringer; M Horan, J Flannery, J Hayes; D O'Callaghan, M O'Driscoll; D Leamy, D Wallace, A Foley capt. Replacements: F Pucciariello, D Fogarty, T Hogan, S Keogh, T O'Leary, J Manning, B Murphy.