Simon Jones has told the beaten Australians that they have a real fight on their hands to regain the Ashes, not just next year but in seasons to come.
Though the fast bowler and his team-mates have partied on and on since beating Australia 2-1, the Welshman says there is a sober ambition within the victorious England camp to hold on to the little urn.
"We want to keep the Ashes, defend them next year and keep them as long as we can," said the 26-year-old whose 18 wickets in four Tests this summer cost 21 runs each.
"We've won the Ashes but it's going to be even harder to retain them. But I think we have got the squad with the capabilities to do it.
"People say they have got an old side but they are an experienced side, and I'm sure many of their players will still be around in two winters. Shane Warne has 600 wickets, Glenn McGrath has 500 and I've got 59 - that puts it into full perspective.
"But a lot of us boys in the England set-up are young so we will be around for five years or so. I don't think there is any limit to what this England side can do, as long as we stay together and keep performing."
Jones added: "It just hasn't sunk in what we have achieved and will take a while. I just did not believe the reaction of the public who turned up in Trafalgar Square and on the streets of London.
"That was special. It was like being at a pop concert. I just stood there thinking: all these people have turned up to see the boys.
" We enjoyed every minute of the bus trip. It was wicked seeing all those people. You couldn't have asked for a better day and I have never had a day like it."
Jones has no doubt about the team's real strength, saying: "The unity in the team is something else. We are just like a big family. When someone isn't quite performing then there's someone else who will put their hand up. It just shows the character of the side.
"It's been the only Test series I've played in where there has been unity between the teams. We got on so well as two teams. I think that is because we have respected each other so much.
"We play hard on the field, and Matthew Hayden and I spoke to each other about when I threw the ball him in the oneday match at Edgbaston. He thought we were going to scrap. We had a laugh about what happened and there's not many people you can do that about."
Jones was "gutted and very frustrated" to miss the final Test and said it was hard to watch the five days of it unfold. But he is determined to have his ankle back to full fitness for the winter tours of Pakistan and India.
He said: "I've got to rest it for two weeks and then reassess. An operation is the last resort.
Everybody is talking about going to Australia next year but before that we have got to go to
Pakistan and India, and beating them on their own patches is going to be hard work."