Socceroo captain-for-the-night Tim Cahill - who may now not get the chance to achieve his ambition of scoring at four World Cups - was baffled by Australia's failure to score a bag of goals against Thailand, which might have seen them finish ahead of Saudi Arabia on goal difference in their World Cup qualifying group.
"We've never played in a game like it before. We started well, we hit every post and bar there was to hit and it just wouldn't go in. We couldn't [feel the nervous energy from the crowd] because when you're on the field you just focus on getting the ball in the right areas, trying to score and I think it was something like 45 shots we had," Cahill said.
"The possession was good, we could have put the final ball in better and we could have been more clinical ... but it wasn't for lack of trying. If you look at the game it is just unbelievable. I have never seen so many players throw their body at the ball, clear off the line. We have to take it on the chin."
His teammate Milos Degenek took a fatalistic view of the 2-1 win.
"God wasn't on our side. We had 45 attempts in the box or something, more than 20 shots on goal and I think the goalkeeper has had a great game," he said.
"We felt positive, we did our best. I don't think we have played this well in a while, so offensive and positive and attacking football. On any other day we score six, seven, eight goals so unfortunately it didn't happen."
Cahill was given the armband and played from the start in the hope that his experience would give the Socceroos an early breakthrough. But aside from a shot which hit the post and rebounded to safety he could not hit the target, and there was little service for the trademark headers which have been his calling card.