No more in this captivating World Cup has cricket's fickle nature been captured better than New Zealand and England.
Two weeks ago, both were the most unlikely of finalists.
Late June was not a happy time for either New Zealand or England.
Yet here they are, preparing for the Lord's finale on Sunday.
England started this World Cup ranked one in the world and rockstar favourites to bludgeon their way to a maiden ODI crown on home soil.
Their crash bash batting approach would prove unstoppable, or so we were repeatedly told.
But as pitches continued to cultivate curiously low-scoring grinds, England continued to falter.
Predictions for totals well beyond 400 never eventuated, and so it has been bowlers who have largely dominated.
In these conditions, the knives were soon out for England's single-minded unwillingness to adapt.
Shock losses to Pakistan and Sri Lanka hinted at troubles coping with home pressure and expectations; England were then on the ropes after their third stumble, the 64-run defeat to Australia at Lord's.
NZ v England! World Cup final set after Aussies implode
The results are in: Who Black Caps fans want in World Cup final
Super fan: Kiwi books last-minute flight to England for final
Another disastrous home World Cup for English sport loomed.
Eoin Morgan stayed calm, stressing fate remained in their hands despite the almighty hole. Their last three matches sudden death, England have comfortably survived them all.
They first let loose against India at Edgbaston, then New Zealand in Durham to overturn a horror situation and move swiftly into the semifinals and finally out of neutral.
Strangely, only in these circumstances did England rediscover their favoured, attacking brand of cricket.
Today's crushing eight-wicket semifinal defeat of Australia case in point; England's remarkable form transformation now near complete with their first final since 1992.
The return of fearless opener Jason Roy has sparked the turnaround by taking on opposition attacks and instigating fast starts.
Roy's approach relieved pressure on temperamental opening partner Jonny Bairstow, allowing him to eventually flourish after he blamed the public and media for England's poor run.
Roy hit 66 against India in his first match back; 60 in his second against the Black Caps and three successive sixes from Steve Smith's gentle leg spin today propelled him to 85 from 64 balls, before he was wrongly given out in pursuit of Australia's well under par 223.
England cruised to victory. With Roy in the mood, early wickets are again non negotiable.
How New Zealand would love one Roy-like contribution from Martin Guptill this weekend.
If England took the rocky route to the final, New Zealand reached the knockouts with a flat tyre and no spare in sight.
The Black Caps were good enough to top the table after five wins in a row to start the tournament but their spiral began around the same time England started to climb.
Three straight losses into the semifinals, the first to Pakistan, offered little encouragement the Black Caps were capable of sending India packing in Manchester.
They of course did just that.
New Zealand will now be more than content if perceived in anything resembling a similar light to their prospects against India.
Let England roll up to Lord's in a limousine parade, while they again sneak in the backdoor. Perfect.
As for Australia, no one will shed tears over their exit. Smith and David Warner served bans for their roles in the ball tampering saga but this Australian team still carries that ignominy.
Five titles are more than enough for now, too. A humbling semifinal loss will do them some good.
This World Cup final is fascinating for the fact it pits two contrasting teams – the aggressor against the intellect – and will crown a new champion.
One unlikely route will prevail over the other but not before we witness more drama in between.