Squad analysis: Australia’s biggest World Cup headaches
So Australia has notched an eight-game win streak, and in the process revived what seemed like flagging World Cup defence.
But that in itself has presented a whole new set of problems.
Good ones, at least, for coach Justin Langer. But problems nonetheless.
They essentially boil down to this: how do you fit 19 into 15?
Australia has a week to whittle down its World Cup participants ahead of a meeting next Tuesday which will decide the final squad of 15 that needs to be submitted to the ICC by April 23.
Let's start by assuming the 15 who went to the UAE to take on Pakistan are firmly in the mix - and we'll add returning duo Steve Smith and David Warner as well as injured quicks Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc, as well as one more familiar and polarising face.
Below, we'll break down the certain selections, those on the bubble and those we think will just miss out.
AARON FINCH, USMAN KHAWAJA, DAVID WARNER, STEVE SMITH, GLENN MAXWELL, MARCUS STOINIS, ALEX CAREY, PAT CUMMINS, MITCHELL STARC (if fit), NATHAN COULTER-NILE, NATHAN LYON, ADAM ZAMPA, JHYE RICHARDSON (if fit)
The core of Australia's batting line-up should be considered certainties, as will the two big names returning from suspension.
As we've written before, Steve Smith's recent numbers don't support the argument that he is a nailed-on guarantee.
But he is, after all, Steve Smith and big players win big tournaments so he won't be missing out on the 15-man squad - though the question marks over his claims to a spot in the final XI will remain for the moment.
With David Warner, there is no doubt. He's made a blazing return in the Indian Premier League, with a trio of century stands with opening partner Jonny Bairstow - and 247 runs @ 127, with the ridiculous strike rate of 175.17.
After months of doubt, captain Aaron Finch has cemented his spot with a commanding series against Pakistan - falling agonisingly short of a historic three consecutive centuries to well and truly remind people of his ability at the elite level.
Usman Khawaja, too, showed off his credentials with a stunning run against both India and Pakistan - in 2019 he has 769 runs at 59.15 to be the world's leading runscorer - to cement not only his spot in the squad but arguably in Australia's best XI.
The middle order suddenly looks considerably stronger with the dangerous, floating Glenn Maxwell producing a magnificent series with the bat - and a high score of 98.
Notably, he was striking the ball at 139.45 - saving Australia's bacon with some explosive hitting.
Australia's bowling attack is also surely coming together - with spin twins Adam Zampa and Nathan Lyon proving they can work in tandem if conditions suit, as they could well do in the UK towards the end of the lengthy tournament.
If fit, Mitchell Starc and Jhye Richardson are sure-fire inclusions but the latter is certainly in significant doubt as he enters the early stages of recovery from a dislocated shoulder suffered this week.
Pat Cummins has confirmed himself as arguably Australia's most valuable player, and his case needs no pushing, while Nathan Coulter-Nile is a favourite of the selectors.
Questions marks have emerged over Marcus Stoinis after his form fell off a cliff against Pakistan - but he remains a lock for the simple fact that his bowling is far too valuable to ignore.
That is, unless selectors want to go back to Mitchell Marsh… but more on that below.
Beyond Stoinis, there is no other seam-bowling all-rounder in the Australian squad - although the likes of Starc, Cummins and Coulter-Nile are more than handy lower-order hitters.
At the last World Cup, Australia took three seam-bowling all-rounders: James Faulkner, Mitchell Marsh and Shane Watson.
Over the course of a long tournament, selectors simply won't go in without a regular option to sponge overs off the main bowlers - meaning Stoinis is a certainty to be there.
Alex Carey is another who has found himself in iffy form, but the need for a specialist wicketkeeper will book his ticket - although there is a growing belief the in-form Peter Handscomb could handle that role at a push.
ON THE BUBBLE
SHAUN MARSH, PETER HANDSCOMB, JOSH HAZLEWOOD, MITCHELL MARSH, KANE RICHARDSON
If those 13 are to be considered 'locks', then that leaves just two spots - likely for a back-up batsmen and a fifth pace option.
If this seems particularly harsh to put Shaun Marsh and Peter Handscomb in this group, it's because it is.
On form - both recent and over the past two years - both should be confident in their places within the squad.
In 2019, Handscomb has scored 479 runs at 43.55 - with a strike rate of 98 - for one hundred and three 50s.
They're the sort of numbers which will more than likely get him on the plane, especially given he wicketkeeping as an extra string to his bow.
However Handscomb and Smith effectively play the same role in the Australian team, which means Handscomb likely can't be considered a certainty.
Shaun Marsh book ended the Pakistan series with strong half centuries - an unbeaten 91 to begin, and a solid 61 to finish - and he has been Australia's best performed ODI batsmen in recent years.
But he's in serious danger of missing out on the squad altogether to accommodate the return of Smith and Warner, and as a result of Khawaja's stunning form.
His brother, Mitchell Mars h, is outside of the squad but holds such support at the selection table that his claims cannot be discounted. Especially given Australia's desire to have depth in the all-rounder position.
Although, considering he's found himself outside the ODI set up in the past 12 months, it would be an extraordinary backflip to call on him now.
Of the fast bowlers, it might surprise to see Josh Hazlewood's name here however injury has sidelined him since the summer and he can't be considered a certainty.
Hazlewood hopes to be fit in time for Australia's final warm-up games. But that could leave his run too late for selectors wanting to take a stable outfit to the UK.
That brings Kane Richardson into the mix after he stamped himself as a capable death bowler - despite playing just two of the five ODIs in the UAE.
Richardson firms even further if his namesake Jhye is ruled out.
NOT MAKING THE CUT
ASHTON TURNER, JASON BEHRENDORFF
After an outstanding introduction to the international arena, with a blazing, matchwinning 84 in just his second game, there was a small push for the talented Ashton Turner onto the plane to the UK.
His big frame, and powerful lower-order hitting, provided a point of difference within the squad.
But the fact he went unused in the UAE is all the confirmation you should need that the 25-year-old is surplus to requirements and will be one of the first dumped.
Jason Behrendorff played four games in India, but was used in just two against Pakistan and quite simply his best shot of making the World Cup squad would be if Mitchell Starc was unable to overcome his pectoral injury.
There won't be room for both of them… and at his best Starc is arguably the best white-ball bowler on the planet, so that spells trouble for Behrendorff.
AARON FINCH, USMAN KHAWAJA, DAVID WARNER, STEVE SMITH, GLENN MAXWELL, PETER HANDSCOMB, MARCUS STOINIS, ALEX CAREY, PAT CUMMINS, MITCHELL STARC, NATHAN COULTER-NILE, NATHAN LYON, JHYE RICHARDSON, ADAM ZAMPA, KANE RICHARDSON/MITCHELL MARSH/JOSH HAZLEWOOD