Bradley Dack marked appearance number 300 of his career doing what he does best, finding the back of the net.

Dack netted for the 46th time on what was also his 100th start for Rovers who have lost just three of the 41 matches he has scored.

The attacker, who turns 26 later this month, hasn’t enjoyed the most straightforward route to become one of the Championship’s standout talents, believing his humble beginnings have been a contributing factor.

From brushing the dressing rooms to sweeping the board at award ceremonies, Dack came through the ‘old school’ way, having to earn the respect of the senior pros in the Gillingham dressing room, and spending time on loan in the Ryman South League with Ramsgate as a 17-year-old.

There has been rejection along the way, leaving Wimbledon when they switched to Milton Keynes, before being released by Charlton at the age of 15.

Dack is something of a throwback for a player in his position, possessing the body strength and goalscoring knack of a No.9, but with the creativity and awareness of the No.10 role he occupies.

And having not come through the traditional Academy route, Dack told the Lancashire Telegraph: “I think as a youngster the best thing to do is go and play men’s football as soon as possible.

“It (Ramsgate) was a big learning curve for me. I was tiny, skinny, but it made me grow up going in to that men’s football environment. I think youngsters nowadays spend a lot of times in the Under-23s and you can get to 21 or 22 and only have played a handful of league games.

“They are probably the ones that would drop down because by the time they’re 25 they haven’t played enough games to experience league football.”

With 18 goals in each of his two seasons at Ewood Park so far, Dack is in to double figures already.

It is a far cry since breaking in to the first-team set-up at Gillingham seven years ago.

“I was 18, there were some big pros in there, Deon Burton, Adam Barrett, Andy Frampton.

“It’s definitely changed, and is changing all the time. I think I was the last group where you came out of the youth team and did all of the jobs around the training ground and on matchdays.

“I always thought it was a good thing, it grounded you. No matter how well you were doing in the youth team, or whether you were in and around the first team, you still had to do your jobs.

“That’s changed, I’m not sure if it’s for the better or worse.”

Few would describe Dack now as ‘shy and retiring’, an enthusiastic presence around the club’s Brockhall training base, and never far from the centre of attention. But that too wasn’t the case early on.

“I was so quiet. It was ‘don’t speak unless you’re spoken to’. You had to earn the respect of the older players and you did that by playing well in training and doing well on the pitch and then they’d start talking to you and you would come out of your shell,” he explained. “It probably took me six months to really start talking to people.

“We used to have to run up the steps on the stadium if we didn’t do our jobs or got in trouble.

“It’s different, footballers are different now, especially when you come through an Academy, everything is done for you.

“That might not be a bad thing. You have to learn your way and earn the respect of the older pros but it doesn’t really happen that way anymore.”

Dack spent five years with Charlton, after being forced to leave Wimbledon, but was released at 15. Gillingham took a chance on him, but only after a year on trial which saw him play on Sundays with his friends in the local Kent league.

His focus is now on trying to achieve his Premier League aim, one he hopes to realise at Rovers, with 18 months left to run on his deal. But he knows he’s heading in to a crucial period of his career.

“I’m at the age where I should be playing my best football and hopefully that is coming and I can keep improving,” said Dack, who has four goals in his last three matches.

“But it is a big period for me and we’ll see where it takes me.

“I’ve not many any secret of the fact I want to play in the Premier League, hopefully that’s with Rovers. If it’s not, then it’s not, my career, I want to play at the top level and I feel like I need that chance.

“I don’t want to miss the boat, I’m happy here and it would be perfect for me to get this club back to where it belongs.

“Time barriers are something I’ll discuss with the manager and where he thinks the team is going, how I look at the team and how it’s progressing and go from there.

“We’ve gone from 10 points outside the top six and three wins later we’re now four points away which is nothing, two or three games and we can be back in the top six.

“We need to find that level of consistency. That’s what we have to do if we have any ambition if we’re to get in to that top six. ”