For 2013 adidas has stitched a bit of extra pride into the Investec Super Rugby jerseys (now available at World Rugby Shop) for the New Zealand teams.
Each team’s jersey will carry the names of the provincial unions that joined forces to form their franchise. These names will be incorporated into each jersey’s inside collar.
The Chiefs jersey, for instance, carries the names of its unions: Counties Manukau, Waikato, Thames Valley, King Country and Bay of Plenty.
Each team was also able to choose an image to feature on the front of the jersey, to reflect their tribal pride. The Crusaders chose to emphasise their medieval theme, with an icon featuring chainmail and the “sword of success”.
The Highlanders decided to do something slightly different, with the words “Pride of the South” running around the collar, and the franchise districts that make up their territory are watermarked onto the front of the jersey: Waitaki, Central Otago, Queenstown Lakes, Dunedin, Clutha, Southland, Gore and Invercargill.
“The teams were keen to add the names of their provincial unions and catchment areas to the jerseys as a tribute to their roots, and to their support base,” says AJ Moriarty, adidas Pacific Merchandise Manager – Rugby.
“The jerseys reflect who the teams are, and where they’re from. And when the players run out onto the field, the loyal followers from New Zealand rugby’s heartland will be right there with them.”
The jerseys were officially launched today at the Super Rugby 2013 squad announcements.
“We know the players named will wear these jerseys with pride. And the new jerseys carry even more pride than before,” says Moriarty.
“As a proud Super Rugby partner, adidas wishes the players every success in the coming season.”
Replica Super Rugby jerseys will also carry the new design features.
The design themes the teams have chosen are:
Blues: The unions that make up the Blues franchise are incorporated into the collar of the jersey: Northland, North Harbour and Auckland. The Rangitoto volcano motif is incorporated into the front of the jersey. (Look closely and you’ll see that the volcano is not lying dormant in 2013.)
Chiefs: The unions that make up the Chiefs franchise are incorporated into the collar of the jersey: Counties Manukau, Waikato, Thames Valley, King Country and Bay of Plenty. The team’s proud koru design – which also featured on their 2012 tournament-winning jersey – is now debossed into the chest of the jersey.
Hurricanes: The unions that make up the Hurricanes franchise are incorporated into the collar of the jersey: Wellington, Taranaki, Manawatu, Hawke’s Bay, East Coast, Poverty Bay, Wanganui, Wairarapa Bush and Horowhenua-Kapiti. The Hurricanes have chosen to retain a bold and simple design for the rest of the jersey, with uninterrupted yellow and black.
Crusaders: The unions that make up the Chiefs franchise are incorporated into the collar of the jersey: Buller, West Coast, Canterbury, Mid-Canterbury, South Canterbury and Tasman. The Crusaders chose to deboss their medieval theme onto the front of the jersey, with chainmail and the “sword of success”.
Highlanders: The Highlanders’ collar carries the words “Pride of the South”, and the franchise districts within their province are watermarked onto the front of the jersey: Waitaki, Central Otago, Queenstown Lakes, Dunedin, Clutha, Southland, Gore, Invercargill.