Wests/UC captain Ben Oakley, left, and Tuggeranong captain Michael Wescombe before last season's Douglas Cup grand final. Photo: Colleen Petch
Wests/UC captain Ben Oakley is expecting a fired-up Tuggeranong to be determined to exact revenge in Saturday's Douglas Cup grand final rematch.
The opening round of the ACT first-grade, two-day competition kicks off with Wests/UC starting its title defence against the runners-up at Jamison Oval.
It was the first two-day title for Wests/UC since 2007-08 as it completed a dominant campaign with victory in the final at Manuka Oval in March.
While Oakley believes Wests/UC is capable of going back-to-back, the ACT Comets paceman is also wary of a powerful Tuggeranong team desperate to go one better this season.
''I assume they would be fired up, if the shoe was on the other foot I know we would be,'' Oakley said.
''Teams are always keen to beat you backing up after a win so we've got to be on the top of our game.''
Wests/UC will be without veteran Darren Richards, Dale Riley and Sam Carters, while all-rounder Ethan Bartlett is doubtful to bowl because of a shin injury.
Talented teenager Matt Condon is back after a sensational season in which he finished as the leading run-scorer in the competition.
Condon will make his Futures League debut for the Comets in their match with Tasmania on Monday.
''I've never seen a bloke love batting as much as him,'' Oakley said.
''He comes to Comets training and just bats for hours.
''With the patience he's got at the crease, he's got the mentality to do it again.''
Wests/UC will have plenty of confidence after destroying Eastlake by a massive 143 runs in a Konica Minolta Cup Twenty20 match on Thursday night.
Having made 6-176, Wests/UC skittled Eastlake for a paltry 33 at Jamison.
In Saturday's other Douglas Cup games, ANU hosts Eastlake, Ginninderra takes on North Canberra Gungahlin and Weston Creek Molonglo faces Queanbeyan at Stirling Oval.