After possibly the greatest afternoon in the history of rugby union, Ireland emerged as Six Nations champions for the second season in a row.
Saturday was a great day for the Irish coach, his team and the legions of followers, but the sport of rugby was a massive beneficiary, and those charged with the future of the game were given a vision of what this great game could be if allowed to flow.
The challenge is now to give the game back to the children, the amateurs and the public and take it away from the gladiators.
We watched the most efficient, most organised and most motivated team in the history of Irish rugby. It was also the luckiest and, across England and Wales, there was weeping and gnashing of teeth as fans saw the spoils slip from their fingers when all seemed certain.
It was compelling. Television viewers were better off than those in the stadia. Television brought all the theatre in to the living room, and never was mathematics so much fun as the destination of the title changed at least six times in the afternoon.
Ireland deviated little from the path of a narrow frontal attack, although, in the first quarter, Luke Fitzgerald saw more of the ball than the hapless Simon Zebo did in the previous four games.
Despite the apparent switch in plan, the habits of a season were hard to break. Robbie Henshaw butchered an opportunity to put Fitzgerald away and then Tommy Bowe came back inside when there seemed a wide option. Paul O'Connell, who stormed over from three yards, rescued the two errors. It was a telling commentary on the narrow focus that Jared Payne, who had a fine game, scored by an inside switch.
The conservative strategy worked but it needed an assist from Wales and England. Predictably, Ireland had the lowest winning points score despite playing against the worst team. They held Scotland in a vice-like grip except when depending on an extraordinary saving tackle by Jamie Heaslip on Stuart Hogg.
His opponents did not match Joe Schmidt's efficiency. There was one addition to the coach's armoury that determined the result of the match and the competition. The arrival of Sean O'Brien demonstrated, if proof were needed, that a winning team cannot be fashioned without an openside.
Describing this extraordinary player as the 'Tullow Tank' gives scant recognition to his incredible athleticism, flair and courage. The problem for the coach is that, without his first-choice No 10 and No 7, his team is toothless.
The title was there for the taking for Wales, and a dropped pass at the death, with seven points beckoning, allowed Italy to score and the points difference went from a possible 67 to 53. Wales were magnificent but lacked Ireland's execution.
England succeeded three times in losing a championship winning position. How they allowed Les Blues to score five tries was a mystery.
The fixture coincidence, which left four of the six nations in with a chance of the championship on the final day, created a different focus for the competing countries. It placed a premium on points scored and not just victory. The result was that kicks at goal were turned down in the search for a converted try.
Mike Brown of England ran the ball from in front of the posts to create a try. However, he would never have attempted that in the previous four rounds.
The rollercoaster of points scored and conceded placed an absolute premium on attacking. For the first time in a decade, we saw sides run from deep, consistently off-load at pace and risk everything in search of the Holy Grail of a converted try. It was thrilling.
The comparisons for Ireland are interesting. Wales and England scored more points as they had better full-backs and centre partnerships. Ireland risked least as they did not have the firepower to do anything else.
The problem may come earlier than we expect in the World Cup. France were seen as a walkover but showed a dangerous side in Twickenham. Even if we pass the first examination, a semi-final could mean a meeting with England, who have demonstrated serious attacking options.
As we luxuriate in reflecting on the thrills and spills of a final day of the Six Nations, there is a nagging feeling that, in a few short months, the game will return to the sterile arm wrestle it has been for almost a decade.
The game's administrators were given a peek in to the possibilities. Are there men of courage, conviction and imagination to make the changes to save the game from extinction?