New Zealand pace bowler Chris Martin has said his side have relished being under-estimated by the British media.
Ahead of the first Test against England, starting at Lord's here Thursday, many pundits have suggested the home side ought to win the series in a 3-0 whitewash and show the kind of ruthless streak they'll need to regain the Ashes in 2009.
But earlier this year, New Zealand upset the formbook to win the first Test on home soil against England although they did lose the three-match series 2-1.
Asked if New Zealand were under-estimated by England, Martin told reporters at Lord's here Tuesday: "Maybe they (the England players) do read the papers a bit more.
"I know there's a lot of media hype to bring the English team up and they should really stamp on us and destroy us.
"If they are not doing it, than that hype is being over-extended and they start to feel the pressure. I suppose you guys (the press) are doing us a favour in some ways."
Reflecting on the recent series, Martin added: "We started with an emotionally charged win, to let it slip in that second game switched the momentum back to England.
"As a bowling unit, we learned a lot about their batting outfit that game (in the first Test). We had the capability and skill to take 20 wickets against these guys, which I think at the start of the series, and all the talk about the number of their guys who averaged over 40, was quite a big step for us."
New Zealand's bowling performance was in marked contrast to that of their 2004 tour of England where they lost the Test series 3-0.
"As a bowling outfit, we were very poor," said Martin. "We let ourselves down. Hopefully, throughout this series, we all help each other out and get a little bit more of a pack mentality.
"When I came over here last time, I was just running on fumes pretty much. At this stage, I'm feeling pretty good. I'm getting older and wiser."
Martin, 33, who has played in 40 Tests, took 11 wickets during this year's home series against England but his return didn't do full justice to the way he bowled. "The rub of the green would be good," he said. "The results will come with a little more perseverance."
What is not in dispute, however, is that in an age where most players are expected to show some batting ability, Martin is a genuine Test tailender, as an average of 2.55 and a highest score of 12 not out testify.
"I've got bruises all over me from the last game (against England Lions) which has woken me up to the fact it's actually important I start getting bat in front of the ball instead of the body," Martin said.
"Double figures has always been pretty good," he replied when asked about his batting targets.
"Relaying the message from what I see to my hands and my feet has always been a bit of a problem."
Not that Martin has cares about ball-striking in other sports. "I can 'smoke' a golf ball, it's not moving."