Aussie cricket more confused than ever
As Australia basks in the glow of a history-making ODI series win over India, the reality is the positive result has only added to the confusion ahead of this year's World Cup in England.
Aaron Finch and Co. became the first men in green and gold to come back from 2-0 down to win a five-match series after a stunning victory over Virat Kohli's troops in Delhi on Wednesday night.
There was joy all around after the team's first ODI series triumph since 2017 - and first on foreign soil since 2016 - but when the champagne stops flowing there will still be plenty of head-scratching among fans and selectors as they ponder the best ingredients to building a successful World Cup side.
Steve Smith and David Warner were expected to walk back into the side in England but it may not be so simple, especially as they've been left out of the squad to face Pakistan in a five-match series in the UAE in the team's last competitive hit out before the World Cup.
Here are all the question marks still surrounding Australian cricket.
Aaron Finch's form has been diabolical all summer and save for his 93 in Ranchi, he was unable to kick into gear in India. But coach Justin Langer has been backing his embattled skipper, giving the impression he's still a World Cup lock.
Dropping Finch would be problematic because it would require finding a new captain (Smith can't captain for a year after his return and Warner is forbidden from holding another leadership position for the rest of his career). Ultimately the decision may come down to whether Australia values Finch's leadership more than his runs.
Once a hard-hitting opener who seized the initiative early in an innings, Finch has become a plodder in his search for form, scoring at the worst strike rate of the top seven that finished the series.
He was completely outshone by opening partner Usman Khawaja, who topped the run-scoring charts with 383 runs in India at an average of 76.60. If Khawaja continues that form in the UAE, it's hard to justify dumping him to squeeze Warner back into the side.
But Warner brings the type of gusto needed at the top of the order if we're going to regularly post totals of 300-plus.
Neither Khawaja nor Finch scored at a strike rate of above 90 for the series and in ODI cricket these days having someone who can go at 120 runs per 100 balls during the first 10 overs of field restrictions is crucial.
England and India - pre-tournament World Cup favourites - have players like Jason Roy and Rohit Sharma who can do just that, and Warner (whose career strike rate in ODIs is 96.55) is our most capable player of going big from ball number one.
Then there's the matter of what to do with Shaun Marsh, Australia's best-performing batsman before the tour of India, where he registered three single-figure scores before being left out of the final match in Delhi.
Against South Africa at the start of the summer he was our leading run scorer and it was the same story in the three-match series against India at home. Can you really be so ruthless as to axe Marsh even though his form - long term - has been better than anyone else's?
Only Khawaja and Kohli scored more runs than Peter Handscomb in India as the Victorian looked at ease against spin in the middle order before being promoted up to No. 3 for the final game, where he scored another half-century.
If Smith walks back in, can he and Handscomb co-exist? Both are seen as similar players who can anchor an innings and milk the bowling without having to take extravagant risks.
Is there room for both in England? Although inexperienced in ODI cricket, Handscomb strikes at 97.27 across 16 matches, suggesting he's more dynamic than some might realise. By comparison, Smith's career strike rate stands at 86.35.
Then there's Ashton Turner, who played a match-winning innings in Mohali where he smoked an unbeaten 84 from 43 balls in his second ODI. Does he miss out if Smith and Handscomb make the final XI, or is it Marsh or Khawaja in the firing line?
We know Shane Warne loves Marcus Stoinis but does he deserve to be a lock at No. 6 or 7 for the World Cup? He only picked up two wickets in the recent series against India, which both came in the final game.
Granted, he only bowled 20.2 overs across five matches as Finch opted to rely on Maxwell's part-time spin to fill overs. So it's not a huge sample size.
Stoinis played some handy cameos with the bat, so probably did enough to suggest he'd be someone selectors want to include in the first XI for the opening World Cup game against Afghanistan.
Alex Carey's position behind the stumps has come under threat with Peter Handscomb's impressive form leading some to suggest he could take the gloves to lengthen the batting line-up.
Carey was promoted to vice-captain so is clearly someone Langer, his teammates and selectors hold in high regard. Last week chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns said he was happy with Carey's progress with the bat and while he's played some valuable knocks late in the innings, he's not likely to launch a blistering assault at the death.
By having Handscomb behind the stumps, it would allow Glenn Maxwell and Stoinis to bat at six and seven, giving the Aussies some serious firepower in the lower order and extra bowling options too, while you get Handscomb's class with the bat in the middle overs.
It'll be a tough one for selectors given Carey hasn't done much wrong - and is a quality gloveman - but is a strike rate of 82.31 in ODIs enough from a No. 7 who will often come to the crease needing to find the rope from the start of his innings?
After taking 11 wickets for the series, former Australian ODI star John Hastings believes leg-spinner Adam Zampa is a lock for the World Cup. Recently coming back from the one-day wilderness, he's done enough to take the frontline spinner's position from Nathan Lyon, assuming only one tweaker will be needed in English conditions.
Pat Cummins is a certainty after taking 14 wickets in five matches but who are the other quicks? Josh Hazlewood is Australia's highest-ranked ODI bowler at No. 10, so providing he's fit, you'd expect him to join the attack.
Mitchell Starc came under heavy criticism during a rough summer but is at his explosive best with the new ball in one-day cricket. He was remarkable at the 2015 World Cup, which will bolster his claims to take a starting berth at this year's tournament.
But he hasn't played an ODI this year and has managed just three 50-over games since February 2018. Does his reputation as an ODI X-factor get him in the side, even if his fitness and recent results don't?
Nathan Coulter-Nile and Jhye Richardson shared the pace bowling duties with Cummins in India and both may force their way into the side with strong performances against Pakistan.
OF COURSE, WE MUST REMEMBER …
There's still a long time to go between now and June 1 when Australia takes the field for the first time at the World Cup, and everything could change.
Finch could score hundreds galore in the UAE, Khawaja could suffer a dramatic slump and Marsh could bounce back to his customary form in the coloured clothes, showing us all his Indian outings were a minor speed bump.
It's also important to note how different conditions in India - and the UAE - are to what the Aussies will deal with in England. The measured starts to Australia's innings in India on slow, low pitches may have been a case of adjusting to the conditions and when given an opportunity on faster tracks, our batsmen might find scoring much easier.
Smith and Warner might struggle to buy a run in the IPL or succumb to their respective elbow injuries, meaning their automatic World Cup selection would require a second look.
There are plenty of questions to be answered but so many variables too, so to make rash judgements at this point would be pointless. For now, let's just hope another series win against Pakistan is on the cards.