Finally Scotland received a break in a World Cup draw by avoiding a group of death in the race to qualify for Qatar 2022.
There is certainly cause for optimism after the balls were kind to the Scots, for a change.
So often in the past Scotland have landed big hitters in World Cup qualifying.
But group F could well become death by a thousand cuts if the Scots underestimate any of the so-called minnows or produce the same levels that resulted in defeats to Israel and Slovakia last month.
Removed from the euphoria of securing qualification to the Euro 2020 finals in Belgrade, those losses underlined Scotland are far from the finished article.
Let’s not forget Scotland were just a penalty shootout away from blowing it all – the Euro 2020 play-offs and the Nations League group.
On initial inspection the Scots landed lucky in a group with Denmark, Austria, Israel, Faroe Islands and Moldova.
There would have been a collective sigh of relief within the Scots’ squad and the Tartan Army when avoiding pot one giants in the draw.
World Cup holders France, Spain, England, defending Euro champions Portugal, Germany and Belgium, top of the Fifa world rankings, were dodged.
However, Denmark are a nation on the rise and beat England 1-0 at Wembley in the Nations League in October.
The Danes have lost only twice in 23 games during the last two years, both to world number one ranked Belgium.
Austria have won six of their last seven matches.
Israel need no introduction. The qualifying games will be the sixth and seventh times Scotland have faced them in the last three years.
In the previous five matches with Israel, the Scots have won just once in 90 minutes having also triumphed on penalties in the Euro 2020 play-off semi.
Israel have won twice, with the most recent a 1-0 Nations League triumph last month – and they are fourth seeds.
Faroe Islands have aspirations of following the Iceland blueprint to rise up the world rankings.
Group F offers Scotland a real chance to qualify for the World Cup, but also so many potential pitfalls.
The failure to top the Nations League group by losing to Israel and Slovakia denied promotion to the top tier. It was a major blow with huge repercussions.
Promotion to League A would almost certainly have guaranteed a spot in the World Cup play-offs as the other sides should all reach Qatar automatically via the qualifying groups.
With that Nations League safety net gone, it is all or nothing in the group F race.
Only group winners are guaranteed qualification to the first winter World Cup, with the top three runners-up from 10 groups into the play-offs.
There is no room for error or slow starts in March.
There have been huge improvements under Clarke, but that upward trajectory must continue apace.
Scotland will have to hit higher levels than they have under Clarke to date to overturn the odds to qualify for the World Cup.
Inconsistency of fans attending darts’ World Championship, but not being allowed back to Pittodrie is infuriating
This month the world darts championship will welcome 1,000 fans to the Alexandra Palace for each session.
However, they will not be allowed to wear fancy dress at the Ally Pally.
Apparently Covid-19 thrives on Spider-Man, Scooby Doo and Fred Flintstone suits.
Those 1,000 fans will be allowed into an indoor venue and will be served alcohol.
Yet Aberdeen’s request to allow 1,000 supporters into Pittodrie for Saturday’s match against Ross County and 2,000 for the Boxing Day clash with St Johnstone has been rejected by the Scottish Government.
That is despite the Dons’ application being endorsed by professor Gary Macfarlane, chair of epidemiology at Aberdeen University.
Let’s say you are a Dons season ticket-holder and a darts fan.
You can get on a plane with no social distancing and sit next to a stranger in a confined space for an hour to fly down to London.
Then you can sit indoors with another 999 people and have a drink, albeit with that added protection of not dressing up as a superhero.
But you cannot walk to your own club and watch a game, socially distanced outside with staggered entry and sanitising stations.
The inconsistency is infuriating. England are getting fans back, but Scotland, where clubs are most reliant on gate receipts, are drowning in inertia.