England have finally learned how to win an international tournament, Australia how to lose one, while India and South Africa continue to flatter to deceive despite an array of talent.
Once again the ICC World Twenty20 has challenged cricket's accepted order.
The irony is that only England came close to facing an unexpected exit in the first group stage, where the eventual winners were a strong breeze away from being knocked out.
Andy Flower's team will argue that justice was served when Ireland's chances of chasing 120 - England's lowest Twenty20 score since the 2009 World Twenty20 - were ruined by rain, 24 hours after the weather allowed the West Indies to claim a Duckworth/Lewis-inspired win which made the clash with Ireland a must-win affair.
Something then went wrong in the India and South Africa camps in the Super Eight round, when the two most IPL-influenced sides won one game between them.
Serious questions will have to be asked about their preparation for this tournament, particularly by India, who have bought themselves the most competitive Twenty20 competition but have yet to see that experience used on the international scene.
The West Indies, energetic hosts but with too many holes in their team, were also dropped at the second stage. So too were New Zealand, whose ageing squad lost their best bowler, Shane Bond, to retirement after the tournament in what could be a sign of things to come for a side with precious few youngsters coming through.
Pakistan and Sri Lanka showed India how a team based around spinners and susceptible to pace can progress even on the varied pitches on offer in the West Indies.
Neither side had more than one outstanding batsmen or bowler but they were able to change their game depending on the state of a match and, apart from Sri Lanka in their last two matches, were always competitive.
In the end it was left to the most consistent and well-rounded teams to compete in the final. Australia have a brilliant middle-order and pace attack, but their lack of a good spinner and a fifth bowler are holes yet to be filled.
England had issues with every part of their team coming into the tournament, but their experimental opening pair were effective, the middle-order won matches when they had to and the five bowlers were different from each other and well rehearsed in their own roles.
Although questions remain over Michael Yardy and Michael Lumb, while Ryan Sidebottom won't have many tournaments left in him, England can for now celebrate a plan coming together while the rest of the world, for once, play catch-up.