Cricket Australia insists it has the strongest Big Bash League playing pool in the competition's history despite some of the game's biggest names being snubbed in the overseas draft.
The star talent overlooked in Sunday night's draft continues to be a point of contention, with the likes of platinum players Faf du Plessis, Dwayne Bravo, Jason Roy and Andre Russell not picked up.
What has become clear is the gap between marquee crowd-pulling players and the specialist T20 talents clubs believe can win titles.
While some big-name stars were not picked by clubs, Shadab Khan, David Willey, Chris Jordan, Laurie Evans Joe Clarke and Asif Ali all earned picks in the opening two rounds.
In reality, the majority of those players are renowned match-winners in T20 cricket despite most having not attracted all-star attention in Australia.
CA also point to the likes of West Indies' Akeal Hosein, the world's No.6 ranked T20 bowler who was picked up by the Melbourne Renegades but is virtually unknown by most Australians.
BBL boss Alistair Dobson insists the large availability of Australia's own international talent meant the competition's list was its most marketable yet at a critical time in the tournament's existence.
"From our perspective, this coming BBL season is the strongest in its history with that entire group," Dobson told AAP.
"Rather than looking at the players who didn't get drafted, it's important to look at the ones who did.
"Rashid Khan, Liam Livingstone, Trent Boult, they represent the best of the best in world cricket.
"Right down through the platinum and gold rounds there are household BBL names in there.
"It's also important to look at that in the context of the full availability of Australia's white-ball superstars and the strong availability of Australia's multi-format players including David Warner."
Along with the key platinum players overlooked, Sandeep Lamichhanne and Tom Curran were also among those not retained.
Boult, Asif Ali and Rilee Rossouw are the best names picked up to have not featured prominently in the BBL before.
But organisers are adamant availability was not as major of a factor behind the non-selections as made out, despite it being major talking point on the night.
Nine of the overseas players picked will be available for the whole tournament, including David Willey, Laurie Evans (both Perth), Joe Clarke (Melbourne Stars) and Colin de Grandhomme (Adelaide) from the platinum and gold levels.
Du Plessis and Russell, who were only available for about half of the matches, were overlooked for others with similar departure dates.
"Clubs in choosing platinum players were comparing apples for apples," Dobson said.
"Availability was clearly one of the inputs that clubs took into account.
"(But) the degree to which availability was a reason why certain players were overlooked wasn't necessarily the case when you look at who was selected."