Stuart Broad, fresh from leapfrogging Ian Botham into second place on England’s all-time list of Test wicket-takers, has warned Australia he is committed to carrying on at the top level for at least another two Ashes series.
It means both Broad, who now has 384 Test wickets, and James Anderson, the No.1 Englishman on the all-time list with 492 Test wickets, have stated their desire to continue until England’s 2019 home series against Steve Smith’s team.
That’s bad news for Australia, whose wait for an away Ashes series win by then will have stretched to 18 years.
Anderson, 35 last month, said earlier this northern summer that playing in the 2019 Ashes is one of the last-remaining ambitions in his career. That could be touch and go, depending on how his body holds up in terms of injuries over the next two years.
Broad, though, was emphatic when asked if he thinks he will face Australia on home soil once again in 2019.
"Oh God, yes, I hope so," he said.
"I’ll be just turned 33. Jimmy is 35 now so I’d certainly hope my performances will keep improving to be a part of that Ashes for sure.
"I'm not someone who looks too far ahead because I think it slows you down as a performer.
"This winter is a hugely exciting one because I think that series is going to be a belter with two teams that look really similar. But obviously I have hunger to go further than that."
There’s more bad news for Australia in terms of Anderson’s recent form. Despite his advancing years, the Lancashire bowler followed up his 20 wickets at 14.10 in England’s 3-1 series win against South Africa with another five against West Indies in the UK’s inaugural day-night Test in Birmingham.
"To be fair, Jimmy is bowling as well as I’ve seen him bowl," said Broad.
"He’s turned 35 but I don’t think I’ve ever seen him challenge both sides of the bat as consistently as he has done this summer.
"Fielding at mid-on and mid-off to him, I feel like he is in the game all the time. He’s not bowling bad balls, he looks in a rhythm that’s awesome. Long may that continue.
"He is taking regular wickets, both LB and bowled and nicking off. That’s a great place for him to be.
"Look, he’s going to be crucial for our chances this winter for sure and hopefully he can keep that rhythm going because he is picking up wickets at a huge speed at the moment and, not only will he be looking at 500, he’ll be looking way past that the way he is going."
As for carrying on until his mid-thirties like Anderson, Broad adds: "I’m 31 now and still feel like I have quite a bit of cricket left in me. I’m loving the energy around this team, I’m loving being part of it.
"At 31 I’ve hopefully, touch wood, got a few more miles in the tank."
With 84 Ashes wickets at an average of 27.69, England will hope Broad can carry on well beyond 2019.
2017-18 International Fixtures:
Magellan Ashes Series
First Test Gabba, November 23-27. Buy tickets
Second Test Adelaide Oval, December 2-6 (Day-Night). Buy tickets
Third Test WACA Ground, December 14-18. Buy tickets
Fourth Test MCG, December 26-30. Buy tickets
Fifth Test SCG, January 4-8 (Pink Test). Buy tickets
ODI Series v England
First ODI MCG, January 14. Buy tickets
Second ODI Gabba, January 19. Buy tickets
Third ODI SCG, January 21. Buy tickets
Fourth ODI Adelaide Oval, January 26. Buy tickets
Fifth ODI Perth TBC, January 28. Join the ACF
Prime Minister's XI
PM's XI v England Manuka Oval, February 2. Buy tickets
T20 trans-Tasman Tri-Series
First T20I Australia v NZ, SCG, February 3. Buy tickets
Second T20I – Australia v England, Blundstone Arena, February 7. Buy tickets
Third T20I – Australia v England, MCG, February 10. Buy tickets
Fourth T20I – NZ v England, Wellington, February 13
Fifth T20I – NZ v Australia, Eden Park, February 16
Sixth T20I – NZ v England, Seddon Park, February 18
Final – TBC, Eden Park, February 21