And All Blacks coach Graham Henry has led the plaudits for his World Cup captain.
"Richie is a very special man," said Henry.
"He provides inspiration to New Zealanders because of his total commitment to enhancing the reputation of New Zealand through the success of the All Blacks team.
"He is incredibly brave, skilful and a hugely intelligent player who has the total respect of his team through the many deeds and successes he has achieved on the rugby field, and his ability to lead from the front.
"On behalf of the All Blacks coaches, management and fellow players, I would like to congratulate him on being the first player in All Blacks history to achieve 100 Tests - a truly remarkable milestone."
Henry has made several changes for the World Cup Pool A clash in Hamilton following last week's opening 41-10 victory over Tonga in Auckland.
Behind the scrum, Mils Muliaina returns at full-back, while there are also starts for wing Cory Jane, centre Conrad Smith and scrum-half Andy Ellis, with Sonny Bill Williams on replacement duty.
Up front, Adam Thomson has recovered from an ankle injury to pack down at number eight, with hooker Keven Mealamu and lock Sam Whitelock also featuring.
Japan produced an impressive display in their opening game against France, and Henry added: "There is no doubt that they are a very good team and well coached by John Kirwan and Mick Byrne.
"They are physical at the breakdown, play the game at speed and they will be a real threat if we let them play like that."
Team: M Muliaina; C Jane, C Smith, M Nonu, R Kahui; D Carter, A Ellis; T Woodcock, K Mealamu, O Franks, B Thorn, S Whitelock, J Kaino, R McCaw (capt), A Thomson.
Replacements: A Hore, J Afoa, A Williams, V Vito, P Weepu, C Slade, S B Williams.
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The entire All Blacks apparel line has been updated for 2013/14. Check out the New Zealand All Blacks polo.
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The NEW All Blacks 2013/14 jersey has arrived at World Rugby Shop. Dare to wear the colors of the All Blacks.