MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 24: Alex Rance of the Tigers walks down the race during the 2018 AFL round five match between the Melbourne Demons and the Richmond Tigers at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on April 24, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Following consistent speculation surrounding his post-AFL career, a former Richmond defender has revealed the direction of his newest venture.

2017 Tigers premiership defender Alex Rance has announced will join the Gold Coast Suns in a coaching role.

The 33-year-old is no stranger to incoming Suns coach Damien Hardwick, having famously plied his starring defensive trade under his tutelage. Rance played nigh-on his entire career under Hardwick and a total of 200 games for the Punt Road club.

After making an appearance for Essendon's VFL side in 2022, the rumour mill was swirling uncontrollably, with many predicting Rance's return to a professional football environment would ultimately see him make his way back to the AFL landscape.

However, to many football fans' -- mostly those who don Bombers colours -- disappointment, it was not to be for Rance, who was regarded as one of the best intercepting backmen during his time in the league.

On Monday night, the five-time All-Australian was awarded with a Western Australian Hall of Fame induction. During his acceptance speech, as reported by The West, he addressed the current links to Hardwick and the Suns, confirming the details of his new gig.

"I will be at the Suns next year, yeah for sure," Rance said.

"I won't be playing. I will do something at the Suns, I am working with 'Dimma' and the management staff on what that looks like and I think it probably lends itself more to the key-position craft, [the] cultural stuff, which I really enjoyed.

"That is still a bit more 'TBC', but [we are] working through the finer details.

"'Dimma' is building his little band up there and I think it is going to be really exciting times."

Hardwick, evidently, is building a relatively Richmond-centric support staff, with numerous Richmond connections having officially joined up at Gold Coast.

Former makeshift ruckman Shaun Grigg recently departed the Cats' coaching ranks in favour of life on the Gold Coast alongside 'Dimma', joining Richmond's former football analysis manager Hayden Hill, who'd served at Tigerland since 2001.