YENDA captain Tom Spry has claimed the underdog tag for the Jets and every other side playing Diggers this season, as he prepares his men to tackle the reigning premiers at Exies No. 2 tomorrow.
Spry said the target on the backs of the Diggers players has grown ever larger in the off-season, with their quality recruits adding depth in key areas of the one and two-day champions.
"You'd have to think they go in as favourites after winning the last couple of comps, and they probably don't have a world-beating side, but they are very consistent," Spry said.
"And now with the addition of Tommy Webb, Pat Whittard and a couple of other guys they'll be outright favourites to go all the way again this year.
"So this weekend will be a tough challenge for us, but I think with deeper batting and our confidence up from our win last weekend we'll be in good stead."
Yenda started the season well with a 61-run win over a young Leagues Panthers outfit, with the starts by the Jets' top-order the most pleasing aspect for Spry.
"We managed to build a few partnerships up in the top six last weekend, a couple of 30s here and there and got us about 130," he said.
"We lost our way in the middle order and lower order, but we were lucky and Justin (Wade) and Dean (Cunial) knocked a few round there at the end.
"I think Blake Ritorto bowled quite well in getting his four wickets and get kept us under wraps he threw the ball up there and our eyes lit up a bit.
"But we haven't really figured out a batting line-up at this stage, so I just threw a few guys in there to see how they'd go in certain positions."
Matt Bruce returns this week in a boost to the Jets' batting strength, which Spry believed might have been light on ahead of their first game of the season.
Diggers' top-order failed to produce last weekend against Hanwood, and the side was bailed out by a whirlwind 66 from Jarrod Cahill.
However, skipper Nathan Smith said his side could not rely on the lower order digging the side out of trouble all of the time and laid down the challenge to the top six.
"Our top order really didn't fire last week and we can always rely on the tail-enders to get runs for us," Smith said.
"But Yenda on their day can be a very good side so we have to be on our ties this weekend.:
Smith backed his bowlers to nullify the Yenda batting order and made it easier for their side if they are chasing a target tomorrow.
"With our bowling attack, which is probably one of the best in the comp, we're pretty sure we can bowl out any side on a good day.
"So hopefully we can get into them early when we get a chance to bowl."
In a further warning to other sides, Smith said attacking middle-order batsman Mick Duncan will be back from a knee injury in a fortnight's time.
"I was talking to him today and he said he would be back soon, our battling line-up is pretty solid at this stage, but I think he'll slip straight back in when he's right to play," Smith said.