Men's hockey at the Commonwealth Games is Australia's private fiefdom. They've won all seven men's hockey events since hockey was introduced in the CWG in 1998. And today they added another significant seven: Australia 7 - India 0.
In fact, they won this latest final, against India, within the first minute. Most teams take a moment or two to collect themselves after pushback. Pass the ball around a bit, let everyone get a feel of it, organise yourselves into some sort of shape. Australia took the ball and ran. Straight at India, straight through India. The ball was in the net before PR Sreejesh had got his first proper cuss word out.
That one was disallowed for late interference by Tom Wickham but it really didn't matter. Everyone who was playing, everyone who was watching... it was 1-0 in their heads.
Rarely could an elite international sports team have been so rattled, so quickly, as India on Monday under the burning Birmingham sun. From that moment on they looked scared whenever Australia got the ball, and they looked scared whenever they themselves got the ball.
"We'd not started well at all against England," captain Aran Zalewski said after the match. They had gone 1-0 and then 2-1 down, only to rally back to win 3-2. They walked into the final like that scoreline had insulted them. Before these two matches they had won four matches at an aggregate of 29-2. This is how they do all CWGs. The aggregate score over the previous six finals? 26-2. And these are finals.
So when they walked ran on to the field against India, they had a point to prove. "We set ourselves to bring that intensity right from the start of the game," said Zalewski.
Two minutes after that disallowed goal, they won a penalty corner; and drew a superb save off Sreejesh. In the next seven odd minutes, they had an open play attempt and another penalty corner attempt saved by the Indian keeper. Till Blake Govers got one to squeeze in through Sreejesh.
The scoreboard reflecting what the mind had already been telling you for a while.
It was only in the last minute of the opening quarter that India even got away a shot anywhere toward the Australian goal. They missed, and Australia ran it from the back and right into the Indian goal - one forward run, two quick passes, and they were two-on-one against Sreejesh before any of the Indians could do anything.
The score may have read only 2-0, but by this point it was becoming cruel.
Now, India are a good team. One capable of playing well on and off the ball. Olympic bronze medallists. Deserving finalists here. They were made to look an amateur side.
Every time they got the ball in defence they were pressed. The vast majority of their simple passes into midfield were cut off and turned over into an immediate, scary, counterattack. The Australians did what they wanted to on the field, and they did it a level of pace and precision that inspired awe.
Every goal was wildly cheered by the Australian sections in the crowd but for most of the time there was a sense of a hushed silence over the crowd: they were in the presence of sporting perfection and they were simply trying to process it.
The second quarter was where the Australians killed the game off on the scoreboard. A Jacob Anderson tap-in after yet another Sreejesh save off a penalty corner, a Tom Wickham one-on-one, and a counter-attack finished off by Anderson again: the score read 5-0.
They had outplayed them, out-bullied them, outclassed them. And then they continued to do exactly that over the next half hour as well.
Going into the second half, the temptation would have been to ease off. The Indians were clearly down and out, the scoreline was emphatic, and yet there was no letup in intensity. Govers said that it had been hard because the question always arises, "do you protect the lead or keep going?" He answered it himself... "You've got to keep going." It's not even a question, if you are a member of this juggernaut. There's no choice, really.
All. Out: Every. Single. Minute.
"You definitely have fun," said Zalewski, before asking rhetorically, "If you can't have fun what are you doing out there? But the thing is, it's important to stay focused on the task." Every time India entered their half, they were shouting at each other, urging each other to press higher, press harder. Every time India made a circle penetration, they screamed furiously at each other. Even when the score read 5-0. That's staying in the now.
"Especially in big games," said Zalewski, "you can't worry about the end result or what's going to happen over the next play or the next moment. You've just got to stay in the present and stay focused on the game."
They did exactly that, scoring two more over the next two quarters: Nathan Ephramus getting the finishing touch on an expansive, and somehow still rapid, move and Flynn Ogilvie finishing off another two-on-one created by their incessant movement.
It was the kind of movement that South African keeper Gowan Jones had praised India for being so good at. This was what we had seen in that semi ratcheted up by a factor of ten.
It also meant that Sreejesh was the busiest player on the pitch. He was the only reason the score remained at seven: He faced 16 shots and saved nine of them, some of them truly spectacular. Andrew Charter in the Australian goal faced one, saved one. He didn't even face a single penalty corner. The dominance those in front of him had established was absolute.
"Don't think it changes our perspective," said Zalewski when asked about the pressure that their history in these Games puts on them. "We always want to perform well whatever game we're playing... we always put pressure on ourselves and that's when you get the best out of ourselves." Which is why they play every game, as the cliché goes, like it's a final. Which is not to say they're not aware of what they had just achieved. "To continue [the tradition of winning] is great, and the way we did it is special."
On Monday, in Birmingham, Australia were awesome, scary, relentless, effective: everything they want their sports teams to be associated with. Perhaps it was fitting then that the last event of the Games they have so totally dominated (67 golds to second place England's 57) was this one. They put on a show, and boy, was it special.