The doomsayers were in their element before the second Test.
England were shattered after the mauling at the Gabbatoir, their resolve broken by Mitchell Johnson and their grasp on the Ashes slipping by the day.
And Adelaide Oval would be a batting paradise where records would tumble as the pitch failed to crumble.
A first-day total of 5-273, after the loss of three wickets in 25 minutes before tea, put paid to that hocus-pocus.
Yes, the Adelaide drop-in is as hard as the massive concrete stand rising on the east bank, but it still offered enough variation to reward bowlers who persevered and perspired.
The ball that Monty Panesar got to jag from middle and leg stumps to cannon into Steve Smith's off peg lit up the expectations of England spinner Graeme Swann and Australia's Nathan Lyon alike.
"It surprised me a little bit because Adelaide is normally a feather bed (for batsmen) for the first three days," Swann said.
"It turned a bit on day one and it is going to turn more as the game goes on.
"Us having two spinners is a big advantage."
Stuart Broad and James Anderson both got good length deliveries to slide away from the searching bats of Michael Clarke and George Bailey after tea.
Yet Australia laboured for their runs and, until the arrival of Bailey who clattered a breezy half century before Swann hauled in a screamer at square leg, found no one able to bat with any fluency for an extended period.
Just as Adelaide Oval has gone from being Test cricket's most charming ground, with its panoramic views of St Peter's Cathedral and the purple Adelaide hills, to a pragmatic stadium with a toilet seat configuration of stands spreading in horseshoe pattern, so too did Australia's most luscious stroke players swap style for accountability.
Opener Chris Rogers was inhibited by expectation.
Knowing on one hand he needed a decent score to maintain his career after two failures at the Gabba, he recognised on the other he was required to flourish on a surface likely to provide a massive first-innings total.
He was caught between the two challenges and was unable to commit strongly enough to either.
"At my age, I know I am only two bad games away from my career being over," he said.
"The pressure I put on myself might be a good thing because I think I play better under pressure.
"If that is the way my career goes I just have to accept it."
Swann, in particular, has a hold over the left-hander that saw him claim Rogers six times during the winter series and repeatedly threaten him yesterday.
Three catchers were stationed close to the bat for much of the battle between the pair and while Rogers several times struck crisp drives against the spinner, he was not able to escape his spell.
Swann eventually struck with perhaps his worst ball of the day - a wide half-tracker that Rogers should have cracked to the point fence but instead, issued a tentative poke that provided a catch into Matt Prior's gloves.
Rogers worked hard in the second innings in Brisbane before being undone by a poor delivery, perhaps the result of his concentration waning against an easy offering after being on red alert.
David Warner constructed his innings in a different fashion but he too perished with the bowling at his mercy.
Four boundaries flowed from his blade in a near run-a-ball effort at the top of the order before a half-hearted chop at Broad provided a simple catch to point.
For such an instinctive and brutal batsman, it was an inept and uncharacteristic demise.
Shane Watson ebbed and flowed throughout nearly three hours in the middle.
He welcomed debutant Ben Stokes with consecutive boundaries through the covers, but then went long periods without playing an attacking stroke of any description.
"… it is going to turn more as the game goes on. Us having two spinners is a big advantage.""England tweaker *Graeme Swann *on the Adelaide Oval pitch