Test incumbent Glenn Maxwell concedes he may have missed the ideal chance to secure his spot for the Magellan Ashes in Victoria's JLT Sheffield Shield clash over the weekend.
The right-hander posted scores of 64 and 60 in Victoria's draw with South Australia at the MCG, an impressive match double that has strengthened his case to hold on to his position in the middle order to take on England.
But given he could have all but sewn up a Test berth if he'd turned one or both of those knocks into a century, Maxwell finished the match with a sense of an opportunity lost.
"I probably threw away two good chances to make hundreds and push my case forward," he told SEN Breakfast on Wednesday.
"But I probably also threw away an opportunity to win us the game as well. I'm disappointed I couldn't do more for the Vics this last game."
The MCG match was nonetheless a breakthrough for Maxwell, who before last week hadn't posted a half-century in any form of cricket since March.
But with the identity of Australia's No.6 still clouded, focus will now turn to the third and final Shield round before selectors meet to name the squad for the first Test in Brisbane.
While coach Darren Lehmann and skipper Steve Smith have both said these early Shield rounds will be a key factor in determining the Test squad, Maxwell hopes previous performances will count for more than what happens in the coming week.
"I have no idea what they're thinking," Maxwell said. "They said they've got a long list.
"I think it's a hard thing to judge on one person making one (big) innings in the last Shield game before the Ashes.
"I think it's got to be over a long period of time that people have put these numbers forward.
"It's been what we've selected (on) for the last however long, guys have had to put up big numbers for a long period of time to get picked for their country."
Certainly Maxwell's state captain and Test No.5 Peter Handscomb believes his teammate has done enough to hold on to his spot in the middle order.
"He's looking really good, he's balanced and he's sticking to his game plan," Handscomb said on Tuesday.
"He's been working that hard and he wants to keep that spot, and I see no reason why he can't. But he's got to keep making runs.
"He's done a good job now and he has to do it again next week."