This time last year Adam Voges appeared destined never to wear the baggy green. On Saturday night he had a Test average over 100, higher than the greatest of them all - Don Bradman.
Voges moves past Bradman's average
Adam Voges now has a better batting average than Sir Don Bradman as he steered Australia to a strong position in the first innings of their test against New Zealand in Wellington.
The West Australian would be the first to admit he does not hold a candle to national treasure but that is the exalted company Voges is keeping, at least statistically, after his latest Test century.
Voges and Usman Khawaja both scored big tons as Australia made huge strides towards the No.1 ranking by taking complete control of the first Test against New Zealand.
The Black Caps have paid a huge price for umpire Richard Illingworth's no-ball mistake. Had Voges been out for seven, and not unbeaten on 175, they would still be a fighting chance. Instead, the Australians, 6-463 with a 280-run lead, have the Black Caps right where they want them.
Voges' teammates are already light-heartedly referring to him as The Don.
"He's got an average higher than Don at the moment, I might have to call him Sir Voges," Khawaja joked.
As it stands, Voges' Test average is 100.33, though that will drop if he is dismissed. Even if he does not add to his overnight score and finishes the Trans-Tasman series in New Zealand with three ducks his average will be a lofty 75, well clear of the likes of past batting greats Graeme Pollock, George Headley and Herbert Sutcliffe.
It is a remarkable turn of events for a player who did not make his Test debut until the age of 35. Even after he passed 1000 runs Voges could not say he had made it at Test level, nor did he feel safe in the XI.
There are some who would still question Voges' Test credentials after his lean Ashes series but there can be no doubting his thirst for runs.
He has now gone 550 runs without being dismissed, breaking the previous mark of 497 set by Sachin Tendulkar 12 years ago.
"The way he's been batting lately it honestly feels like he's not going to get out sometimes," Khawaja said. "He's making hundreds, and big hundreds, which is important for the team."
That they have come against the West Indies and the sixth-ranked Kiwis should not be held against Voges as he can only obliterate the opposition he is given.
Voges' numerical wonders overshadowed another brilliant display by Khawaja, whose 140 was his fourth consecutive first-innings Test ton and arguably his best - even if he did not say so himself.
The Khawaja of 2016 is unrecognisable to the batsman who in his previous Test stint was always waiting for a tap on the shoulder from selectors. He said coach Darren Lehmann's resassuring words at the start of the summer had helped him to relax.
"He said I'd get a fair crack at it, so that kind of helped too," Khawaja said.
Finishing this Kiwi XI off will not be straightforward, particularly on a Basin Reserve wicket that has lost all its green and, in keeping with recent history, morphed into a batsman's paradise.
Australia lost two wickets in the space of three deliveries - both against the second new ball - but only one other for the rest of the day.
Even so, the Black Caps need something special to salvage this Test though extraordinary things have happened at this ground in the past two years.
Kane Williamson and Kumar Sangakkara struck double centuries here last year and 11 months earlier Brendan McCullum became the first Kiwi to break the 300-barrier in Tests.
Even if those once-in-a-lifetime feats are not repeated, taking New Zealand's second 10 wickets should prove much harder than their first 10.
"I still think there's enough in this deck to create chances," Khawaja said. "You need a little bit of luck on your side as well."