THE expected north-western monsoon had threatened initially, but failed to arrive – an apt description of South Africa's flirtation with the ICC World Twenty20.
South Africa arrived having completed a successful tour of England and were No 1 in test and T20 cricket.
Captain AB de Villiers even confronted the chokers' tag. South Africa had choked in the past, he admitted on arrival, but suggested they had overcome it. Yet by the time the team departed, it had surfaced once more.
So where did it all go wrong?
After a comfortable warm- up victory over New Zealand in Colombo, things started well in Hambantota. It was like home away from home: pace, bounce and swing were freely available.
South Africa's pace bowlers thrived. They bullied Zimbabwe into a 10-wicket submission with more than seven overs to spare and then bombed the Sri Lankans out in 14 overs.
The batsmen found conditions to their liking with the ball coming onto the bat, but that was to change when they returned to Colombo for the Super Eights.
The surface at R Premadasa Stadium was very different: the ball would grip and turn, forcing the South African batsmen to adjust, but they failed to do so quicklyenough.
There should be no excuses as 13 of their 15 players have Indian Premier League and-or Champions League experience.
That Robin Peterson topped the batting averages tells a sad story. South Africa's two batting bankers, Hashim Amla and Jacques Kallis, were hugely disappointing.
De Villiers fell way short of the mark in his first tournament as captain. His decisions at crucial times proved wrong and his insistence at not batting higher than five until the last match against India was costly in the end.
In T20 cricket, you get your best exponents of the game in as early as possible. De Villiers is the Proteas' most talented batsman and should have been batting at three from the outset.
The bowlers pretty much held their own apart from the odd, ill-timed lapse of concentration here and there, but the fielding left much to be desired.
South Australia-bound Johan Botha has probably played his last match for the Proteas and it will be surprising if the selectors keep faith in Albie Morkel.
Kallis has an unquenchable thirst when it comes to playing cricket, but it may now be time for him to bid farewell to the T20. That leaves at least three spots for fresh blood.