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Bond University Rugby club launches into elite competition

Attention Bondies: be sure to head on down to the Bond Rugby Fields this Saturday 29 March, to cheer on the Bond University Rugby Club as they take on Brothers:  

  • Colts @ 11.20am
  • Premier Colts @ 12:30pm
  • 1st Grade @ 1:50pm
  • Premier Team @ 3:30 pm

Bond University will become only the third university in Australia to field a rugby team in Premier competition with the evolution of the Bond University Rugby Club from a partnership which began last year between Bond University and the 17-year old Gold Coast Breakers Rugby Club.

Bond University has been invited by the Queensland Rugby Union to participate in the Queensland Premier Ruby competition in 2014.

Bond University joins the Universities of Queensland and Sydney in fielding an elite rugby team. Bond University Rugby Club will play in the Queensland Premier Rugby competition, with a new strip and a new brand which reflects Bond's aim of creating a sustainable and secure future for a high performance team on the Gold Coast.

The inaugural board of Bond University Rugby Club comprises a strong blend of rugby experience and high profile local business expertise reflecting the goal of providing a more proficient club, giving a high priority to future investment and leadership.

The President of the board is prominent Gold Coast businessman Tom Ray. Former Wallaby captain Nathan Sharpe and iconic coach Alex Evans provide rugby expertise, and are joined by Queensland Rugby Union Chief Operating Officer David Hanham, the Director of Sport at TSS Bryan Hain, the Chair of Gold Coast & District Rugby Union President Michael Summers and Bond University’s Pro Vice-Chancellor of Pathways and Partnerships, Catherine O’Sullivan. 

Tim Rowlands will assume the role of CEO of Bond University Rugby Club and current Deputy Chairman of the Breakers, Bruce Wright, will become Chair of the Club’s Community Committee.

Mr Ray said Bond University Rugby Club had evolved from the successful strategic alliance formed in 2013 between Bond University and the Breakers Rugby Club.

"The creation of the single rugby brand – Bond University Rugby Club – is consistent with the University's mission to establish itself as the number one sports university in Australia, and build on its already strong relationships with Queensland Rugby Union and Australian Rugby Union," said Mr Ray.

"Bond University Rugby Club has been established this year as the all-encompassing organisation to coordinate and fulfil Bond’s rugby ambitions and activities.

"Bond, as both a University and a Rugby Club, can now offer a unique pathway for aspiring and talented young players in 2014."

Bond University will field four teams this season including the Premier team (in the Queensland Premier Rugby Competition), and the Premier Colts, a First Grade team and a Colts 1 team (in the grassroots Brisbane Rugby Competition).

Bond University Vice Chancellor, Professor Tim Brailsford, said the teams would build on the rich traditions and nucleus of players and coaches from the Gold Coast.

"The Gold Coast Breakers last year joined forces with the University to become the Bond Breakers and we now see a full integration which allows the new club to enter 2014 with both the ambition and resources to become one of the most competitive rugby forces in Queensland," said Professor Brailsford.

"Bond University Rugby Club stands for the ultimate in excellence and ambition.

"The club is based within the University and benefits from the supportive environment of the campus including resources, infrastructure, culture and values, with the mindset of realising ambition which is a core value that underpins the foundations of Bond University."

Professor Brailsford said part of Bond University’s strategy was to be internationally recognised for the quality of the student experience, which includes participation and achievement in sport.

"We believe that sport provides an excellent opportunity for the development of team-based skills and for individuals to become leaders, and as such, the Bond University Rugby Club plays an important role in fulfilling our mission," he said.

"The University’s investment in rugby has considerable benefits for the game itself, and the local rugby community.

"We believe the advancement of rugby and indeed sport in general is positive for our society at large."

Queensland Rugby Union CEO, Jim Carmichael, said he was pleased to welcome the Bond University Rugby Club to the 2014 Queensland Premier Rugby competition.

“The Gold Coast is an important strategic territory for Rugby, given its size, the overall investment in sport in the region and events already held on the Gold Coast sporting calendar, including IRB, ARU and QRU Rugby Sevens competitions,” Mr Carmichael said.

“The region’s Rugby growth can be largely attributed to the support of local clubs and this local team will represent the aspiration of the Gold Coast by becoming part of the Premier Rugby competition.

“The Gold Coast is renowned for producing high-quality representative players at both senior and schools level, like current Reds and Wallabies players James Slipper and Ben Daley. The role that the Bond University Rugby Club will play in providing a strong talent pathway for young Rugby participants will ensure that the Gold Coast will continue to provide elite players of the future for rugby in Queensland.”

Australian Rugby Union CEO, Bill Pulver, said Australian Rugby had benefited enormously from its formal association with Bond University.

"Our partnership gives us the opportunity to work towards creating a gold-medal performance in Rugby Sevens for men at this year’s Commonwealth Games, for men and women at the 2016 Olympic Games and for men at the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast," said Mr Pulver.

"Our Under 20s team will also benefit from access to Bond University’s state-of-the-art facilities as part of their preparations for the IRB Junior World Cup in New Zealand in June."


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