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AFL club celebrates hard-fought grand slam

Oliver Burrows-Cheng accepts the Club Champion Award.

After a near-perfect season across all Bull Sharks grades there was plenty to celebrate at the 2023 AFL Blue and Gold Awards. 

The annual event is always a big occasion but for 2023 men’s Club Champion Oliver Burrows-Cheng, receiving his award held particular significance.

After several tough years in the QAFL, Burrows-Cheng was ready to hang up his guernsey for good.

He shelved his retirement plans after housemates and now fellow Bull Sharks Blake Spencer and Jack Tilley encouraged him to give Bond a try. 

“Ever since the first training session I just fell in love with the club and also back in love with footy,” Burrows-Cheng said. 

“Joining Bond was probably the best decision I’ve made in my footy career.” 

Adding to the significance of the Club Champion title was that Burrows-Cheng was following in the footsteps of his older brother Eddie who won the award at Bond six years prior.

Women’s Club Champion Courtney Sexton, left.

The 2023 Women’s Club Champion was Courtney Sexton who made it a double after receiving the award last year. 

While Sexton and Burrows-Cheng took home the top player awards, the evening also celebrated the dedication and hard work of the entire Bond AFL Club. 

Making  four out of four grand finals and winning three was no easy feat, and Friday night brought recognition to those members who drove that success. 

The 2023 John Le Lievre Club Person of the Year award went to not one, but two dedicated and passionate club members. 

David and Darren Williams’ contributions to the club date to 2017. 

Every weekend during the off-season, the Williams brothers coordinate weekly training sessions for athletes to hone their skills. 

The 2023 Trademark Player Awards went to Hunter Heck in the women’s reserves and Axel Moore in the senior men’s.

The prestigious award is bestowed upon players who are deemed to encompass the club’s values and epitomise the ‘Bond way’.

Also highlighted during the awards night was the prowess of the Bull Sharks’ sharpshooters - the highest goal-scorers. 

The 2023 Goal Kicking Awards went to Isabelle Lowe, Kane Peeters, Isabella Iverach and Matthew Smith. 

The Rising Star Awards were presented to the club’s two most improved players, Tshinta Kendall and Flynn Ayton. 

For Kendall, 2023 marked her first year playing AFL after making the transition from rugby. 

The Best and Fairest Awards went to Jessica Nguyen and Joshua Clarke.

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