Justin Langer refers to winning a Test series in India as his Mount Everest but it is the men's Twenty20 World Cup that has repeatedly proven Australia's unconquerable summit.
Australia's seventh attempt to secure an elusive T20 crown will begin on Saturday night (AEDT), against South Africa in Abu Dhabi.
The rapidly-evolving nature of T20 cricket, coupled with the changes to the tournament format since Matthew Hayden bludgeoned 265 runs to lead all scorers at the inaugural edition in 2007, makes it hard to draw parallels with past failures.
But there was palpable and widespread belief 19 months ago that head coach Langer, mastermind of Perth Scorchers' WBBL dominance before answering Cricket Australia's SOS after the Cape Town cheating scandal, had set a strong platform.
Australia had just won a fourth consecutive T20 series for the first time, were en route to top spot on the T20 rankings for the first time, and set to host the T20 World Cup for the first time.
COVID-19 then caused calendar chaos.
Australia's 2020 World Cup was pushed back to 2022, while India were cleared to host the 2021 World Cup in the UAE.
Knock-on effects of the coronavirus pandemic also hampered Australia's preparation for the World Cup.
Australia have crashed to seventh on the T20 rankings after several weary stars, wary of bubble fatigue, skipped this year's loss-laden tours of the West Indies and Bangladesh.
Domestic travel restrictions and the recently-completed Indian Premier League (IPL) ensured Australia's 15-man World Cup squad didn't assemble until this week, when Pat Cummins was released from quarantine in the UAE.
The various hurdles and headaches come as Langer finds himself under pressure, mainly triggered by disgruntled players, and with this summer's Ashes fast approaching.
Captain Aaron Finch recently underwent knee surgery and Australia's first-choice XI is yet to be nailed down, while David Warner and Steve Smith struggled to get a game in the second phase of the IPL.
The glass half-full argument is that Australia boast some of the world's best T20 match-winners - Josh Hazlewood and Glenn Maxwell produced ominous form in the recently-completed IPL, and T20 momentum shifts with a single blow or ball.
As Maxwell points out on the eve of his fourth T20 World Cup, Australia are in the all-too-rare position of picking a full-strength side in the shortest format.
"I feel like we're getting closer (to winning a World Cup). When we've had a strong squad in T20, with everyone available, it's been great to watch and exciting," Maxwell said.
"It's pretty fickle, T20 cricket.
"I look back over the years ... the World Cup I played in 2012, when Shane Watson was player of the tournament and we were flying that whole tournament.
"We fell short at the semi-finals. We felt like we were a powerhouse ... but you get to the day and someone from the opposition has a day out, it's hard to stop.
"It's the one format when one person can beat you on the day."
In 2012, it was six sixes from match-winner Chris Gayle in an unbeaten 75.
In 2014, Australia never recovered from Umar Akmar's rampage in their tournament opener.
In 2016, Virat Kohli's masterclass in chasing proved the difference in a virtual elimination final against India.
Maxwell looms as arguably the man most likely to produce something similar for Australia in coming weeks, although the innovative batter deflected such great expectations while predicting in-form Mitch Marsh would dominate.
"I don't think I've seen anyone hit the ball better - ever," Maxwell said .
Marsh is set to bat at first drop, which could leave Smith scrambling to claim a spot in the XI if Langer sticks with his preference of five specialist bowlers.
Australia's star-studded attack will be crucial to their hopes of advancing from a group featuring defending champions West Indies and ODI World Cup holders England.
Cummins, Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc are yet to play a T20 together for Australia, while Adam Zampa and Ashton Agar have formed a potent spin partnership in recent years.
Most pundits believe reaching the semi-finals will be a win for Langer's side, and that next year represents a far greater chance because of home-ground advantage and relatively batter-friendly pitches.
It isn't a view shared by any member of Australia's squad.
"I'd love nothing more than to win the World Cup. Anything less will be a disappointment," Zampa said.
Australian Associated Press