Australia duly won the Superflop series against the World XI by 3-0, with yesterday's thrashing by 156 runs the biggest mis-match of the lot.
The unashamedly commercial exercise proved that, to paraphrase a modern cliche, you can take the man out of a team but you can also take the team out of a man.
Namely, even though a big name booze sponsor is persuaded to throw money at an always ill-fated tournament, there is no guarantee a disparate collection of some of the greatest cricketers in the world will ever compete with the same combined ethos as a genuine team such as Australia.
Never will players such as Brian Lara, Jacques Kallis, Kumar Sangakkara, Muttiah Muralitharan, Rahul Dravid et al have a better opportunity to rub the noses of the best ranking side in the world into the sludge of the Telstra Dome's woefully uneven outfield of muck and dust.
Only Andrew Flintoff and Kevin Pietersen had experienced the euphoria of duffing up the Aussies, so it was logical to assume that the others from the West Indies and the sub-continent would bust a gut to beat the Baggy Greens and help themselves to the odd £40,000 per man at stake in the three-match series.
Logical maybe, but the ICC marketing men now know that you can't even fool some of the people some of the time. Cricket is a game of statistics but, to quote another adage, some of them turn out to be damned lies.
The World Squad might have boasted 1,950 one-day caps and have scored 47,000 runs, but how do you explain that Lara, Kallis and Pietersen would contribute 42 runs in eight innings, with five of that octet of dismissals down to poor, rash strokes? Lara suffered two ducks and a third single-figure score, with two balls smashed on the up to cover as though he was in prime form and on a belter of a pitch.
And who would believe Flintoff's series bowling figures of 21.2 overs being belted all over Melbourne for 153 runs? He has developed into one of the most aggressive defensive bowlers in all forms of cricket, yet he bowled mostly a diet of short and wide rubbish. And all within a month of his personal triumph at the Oval.
As for Kallis, he showed that his massive one-day record does little for the team, and his refusal to allow Sangakkara to survive a run-out mix-up underlined that he does not do sacrifice, even when his partner is threatening to win the match.
More likely than Kallis keeping an eye on the match situation is Pietersen undertaking to take a Trappist vow of silence.
The one plus factor for the World XI was the brilliant spin bowling of Muralitharan and Daniel Vettori. They combined yesterday to take three wickets for 72 in 20 overs, compared with the awful two for 159 from 23 overs of pace. Never mind that one or two of the overseas bowlers were short of a gallop, nor that Adam Gilchrist took full advantage of his captain winning all three tosses. The wildly inaccurate diet of half-volleys and long-hops was inexcusable.
No wonder that captain Shaun Pollock was at his wits end, even though he was as guilty as anyone. He cared, and as it would be unfair to suggest that others did not, but at least he showed his hurt. Particularly towards the end of the Australian innings yesterday when Pollock the bowler watched in horror as sloppy fielding from Kallis at long on gifted an extra run to Mike Hussey and Shane Watson.
He gave his compatriot a real burst from 50 yards or so, but there was no reaction - not even a token upraised apologetic hand. It may be different in the Test match on Friday, although that's doubtful against a revived batting line-up and the return of Shane Warne for the six-day contest.
The biggest disappointment of all was Shoaib Akhtar. He offered little than postulating theatricals when his dross was duly punished. It is a mystery how and why he was selected and surely, he cannot be picked for the Test match. England's chances of winning in Pakistan can only improve if he plays against them next month.
The World selectors - under the chairmanship of Sunil Gavaskar - admitted that they erred in picking the best players with no regard for fielding. They lacked even one greyhound - Lara had to occupy the key position of backward point - and that aspect, coupled with their running between the wickets, meant a difference of at least 30 runs per match.
Another disappointment was yesterday's performance of umpire Aleem Dar. The whole point of giving the umpires in the series the facility to refer any decision to the third umpire was to eliminate possible errors, even if said referrals took some time to resolve. This did not mean that the third umpire would decide lbws, but he could be asked whether a ball had pitched outside leg stump and also whether it struck the pad in line.
Dar refused to refer when Ricky Ponting was nailed on the back pad by Makhaya Ntini when 23. The umpire indicated the ball was high, but it was not and the decision was a poor one. He did refer later and was able to refuse an appeal, but again refused to enquire when Muralitharan had Watson, also plumb.
To complete a bad day, Dar called the unfortunate Ntini for a no-ball off which Hussey was caught in the 50th over. Replays showed that Ntini grounded the front foot legally, but his impetus took the heel over the line.
The law calls for the initial grounding to be the criteria, not when it finished.
The final statistics of the misguided series are damning. The World side was beaten by margins of 93, 55 and 156 - totalling 304 with 30 overs unused in three woeful batting collapses.
Never mind, there is always Aussie humour to further lighten the floodlit hit and giggle mis-matches.
Admirers of Flintoff waved a huge flag with "Freddie's" name writ large, under which was pomegranate - spelled "Pommie Granite."
On the dark side was this message on another flag: "The End of the World is here. RIGHT NOW."
Too right cobbers.