Andrew Strauss can at last allow himself and his fellow 2010/11 Ashes winners to celebrate their historic achievement.
It was five minutes before noon on the final day of the series that Chris Tremlett completed a mission long overdue, since Mike Gatting's tourists last won the Ashes outright here for England 24 years ago.
As Michael Beer's backward-defensive prod made only edgy contact back on to his stumps, the familar rattle was instantaneously drowned out by wild approval from the vast majority in an England-dominated crowd of almost 20,000 at the SCG.
It was the cue for scenes of richly deserved congratulations on and off the pitch as it finally became fact that this England team, unlike five others who tried since 1986/87, had beaten Australia in Australia.
Strauss had spent so much of the past month counselling against complacency and premature back-slapping, even after the Ashes were retained in the fourth Test at Melbourne. But once his team had scored a third innings victory of a remarkable tour - on the back of another welter of runs from Alastair Cook and more admirable bowling from James Anderson et al - there was suddenly no longer any reason for restraint.
"It feels pretty special," said Strauss, recovering a little necessary composure in the moments after he had hoisted the replica run on the presentation podium and acknowledged England's delirious supporters in a heartfelt lap of honour.
"Now we have done it, I think we can give a big sigh of relief and be very proud of what we have achieved, because not many sides have come out here and won - and certainly not many as emphatically as we did in the end. It's a dressing room full of pride - with a bit of alcohol, I would have thought."
England knew long before start of play today that they would be taking the Ashes home via an outright series victory - and with Australia 213 for seven and still 151 runs short of avoiding an innings defeat, it was a pretty safe bet too that it would be 3-1 rather than 2-1 to the tourists.
Yet after Steve Smith (54no) and Peter Siddle (43) had blocked out the extra half-hour last night, the threat - and then reality - of rain interruptions served to prove Strauss' point that nothing can ever be taken for granted.
"Until an Ashes series is finally over you've always got half an eye on what's to come - so even after Melbourne we were still very conscious that we wanted to finish the series on a high and show people we wanted to win the series," he said.