Skip to main content
Start of main content.

‘Captain Dan’ is focused on a vision splendid

‘Captain Dan’ is focused on a vision splendid. PICTURE: Stephen Tremain

Silky-skilled centre Dan Boardman has a vision that goes a long way past the scoreboard at the northern end of Bond university’s The Canal rugby home ground.

Sure, he wants that scoreboard to always be in the Bull Sharks’ favour, but Bond’s First Grade captain can see a gaping opportunity right in front of him that is far more lasting than any game stat.

“I don’t really like the term ‘culture’, but we have a chance here and now to cement something really good at this club,” he says. “Something that in years to come we can proudly say, ‘Yes, I was part of building that’.” 

Boardman, 24, has had some time to reflect over recent days. Like everyone on the Gold Coast, he was in Covid-enforced lockdown and then the Bull Sharks had the bye this weekend, which gave him a little extra ‘thinking time’.

Bond’s premier grade men’s team is in a solid third position on the points ladder, despite a long injury list. At the end of this weekend’s Round 13 of an 18-round season, they are well-placed to make a huge impact come finals time. (All Round 13 matches were scheduled to go ahead today, Sunday, as a result of Covid restrictions.) 

Boardman, who was born in Brisbane, grew up in Lennox Head and played two seasons at Sydney’s famed Randwick club before joining Bond in 2018, knows that he is part of scripting a story where premiership glory is just one compelling chapter in a much wider read.

“I remember when we were talking a couple of years ago about what we were trying to achieve at this club,” he says.

“As a group we were asked - were we trying to create a club where mates had a run each weekend or was it going to be something more professional?

“This is a special time for the Bond Rugby Club. This is a young club still establishing its identity. As First Grade captain there is a lot of responsibility around how I play and how I lead. I am hard on myself because I take a lot of pride in what I do.

“I see the potential in this club and I want to bring others along as well, all working together.

“Bond is a very unique club. It has the influence of the local private schools, where some players come from. But there are also plenty that come via the local Gold Coast competition.

“I have to admit, when I first came here (in 2018) it was different. Players were coming and going. I had experienced the small, tight rugby community at Lennox, and then the Randwick version, which is steeped in success and tradition … then Bond.

“Things have changed a lot since then and that goes back to the coaching and management team. They have set up the framework for success. However, they have given the players the room and responsibility to help map the future.

“We are encouraged to ‘express ourselves’ on and off the field. I have no doubt that there is a different feeling here to any other club. There is a creative energy here, a vibe that inspires you to work hard, to all play our part to not only win a phase of play and the game, but to also establish something great at the club.”

Boardman says after living the relaxed lifestyle of Lennox Head and being part of the Sydney maelstrom, there is nowhere he would rather be than on the Gold Coast.

He is a support worker for high-profile, wheelchair-bound former rugby player Perry Cross and recently also delved into career opportunities in real estate and financial planning and has just joined the home owners fraternity at Palm Beach.

“I am loving life at the moment,” he said. “The Gold Coast is a great place to live. I really feel like I have found my feet here.”

Boardman also has belief that Bond can go further than their finals debut last year which saw them ousted in the preliminary finals at the hands of Easts after defeating GPS in the semis.

“The energy has certainly changed through the years at this club,” he said.

“We had a taste of finals last year and I believe this is a premiership side this year. We have had our ups and downs and after about Round Five I may have had my doubts, but not now. The players are working for each other.

“Across the park we have genuine attacking power. Tasi (Tautalatasi Tasi) is a beast in the centres. He gives us constant go forward. Our halves, both Liam Dillon and Spencer Jeans, and James Ambrosini have been really good.

“It was great to see Joey Fittock back from injury last weekend. He is a real attacking weapon, especially off my try assists (laughs).

“And of course all of our forwards have laid the platform, especially blokes like Connor Pritchard, Dylan Rowe, George Blake and Egan Siggs, who just have an enormous workrate.

“And we need to improve through the back end of the season. We have to focus on our individual skills and execution. We just have to cut down the errors, where we basically say to the opposition, ‘We have done all the hard work, but here you take the ball’.

 “There is still room for improvement in our defence, in our attitude and willingness to make the tackle.

“We are all looking forward to getting back on the paddock after the bye. There is a lot to achieve.”


More from Bond

  • Bond athletes clean up at Sports Star awards

    The Gold Coast Sports Star of the Year awards resembled the University Blues as Bond athletes took home a swag of honours.

    Read article
  • Bull Sharks stun premiers in round one upset

    The Bond University first grade side has made the perfect start to their 2023 campaign, defeating the Wests Bulldogs 32-17.

    Read article
  • Politics at heart of housing crisis

    Australia’s housing crisis isn’t the fault of dodgy developers and greedy landlords, it’s a product of politics and poor leadership, says a Bond University property expert.

    Read article
  • In pictures: Bull Sharks rugby season launch

    Bond University Rugby launched their 2023 season with a breakfast at the Fabian Fay Clubhouse.

    Read article
  • A student's perspective on technology in elite sports

    Medical student and cricketer Benjamin Rainbird gains new insights into the use of technology in sports during a debate featuring Usman Khawaja.

    Read article
Previous Next