Bringing together some of the best in adidas sustainability and performance technologies, the alternate shirts are made with PRIMEBLUE, and take their individual design inspirations from the natural world that surrounds each of the five professional clubs taking part in the Sky Super Rugby Aotearoa and Sky Super Rugby Trans-Tasman competitions.
United for one cause, each jersey in the collection has been designed with an eye on adidas’ ambition to end plastic waste. All of the teams will wear kits created with adidas PRIMEBLUE – a high-performance recycled material made in part with Parley Ocean Plastic; upcycled plastic waste intercepted on shorelines and coastal communities around the world to prevent it from polluting the oceans. This is part of adidas’ commitment to continue to innovate in the area of sustainability, and the journey to reaching more than 50% total volume of recycled polyester at the end of 2020 and to use only recycled polyester in all products across the business by 2024.
Looking to the rohe o te Kapa Orangi - the region surrounding the club - the Blues will take to the pitch in a kit inspired by Tamaki Makaraurau (Auckland). With a unique wavy design featuring hard lines juxtaposed against a fluid look, the jersey draws inspiration from the reflection of the Harbour Bridge on the waters of the Waitematā which runs below it. This is further brought to life with bright blue accents on the sleeves, the main body graphic and shorts popping against an all-over white base.
Continuing the collection, is the Gallagher Chiefs Super Rugby PRIMEBLUE alternate jersey. The design team – including members of the Māori community who co-created the shirt with adidas designers - took their colour inspiration from Kōhatu (stone) connecting it with the flowing pattern of Wairerenga (running waters) washing and rippling over the top. He Kiri Kōhatu (A skin of stone) are words from an ancient incantation calling for protection for those going into battle and the powerful force of flowing water is depicted in the Kowhaiwhai patterns to the side and over time etches out from the Kōhatu the figure of Akerautangi at the centre. In Māori mythology, Akerautangi is the deity who assisted Tūmatauenga in his battle with his brother Rongo.
The all-new Crusaders Super Rugby PRIMEBLUE alternate jersey takes its design inspiration from the surrounding area, beginning with the backbone of the region – the mighty Southern Alps. From these mountains, flow ancient glaciers, which inspire the jerseys pattern, to reflect both their legacy and unstoppable momentum. The jagged edge pattern and the grey hue is designed to adorn the Crusaders players with the elements of this environment – ice covering stone, momentum born of strength and stability. It is finished with flashes of red and black – the colours of infinite potential and leadership, the colours of the Crusaders - Mā Pango mā whero, ka oti te mahi.
To create the Highlanders 2021 away jersey, adidas designers also looked to the earth surrounding them to inform its aesthetic, using earth as an organic element. Adorned with an all-over abstract pattern, that represent the balance of city and rural life of the area, it also incorporates tartan; a pattern that’s synonymous with the club’s home base of Dunedin.
Rounding off the adidas 2021 Sky Super Rugby alternate collection, is the Hurricanes jersey. The sweeping fade affect pattern on a steely grey base continues the abstract display seen on last season’s jerseys – created by mapping out some of the 390 wind turbines in the Wellington area. Updating this concept for a new season, this is combined with the look of wind hitting an object together creating a unique graphic. The alternate shirt is complemented by a pop of yellow on the sleeves and three black stripes on the shoulders.
The jerseys will be available from adidas.com and via the adidas app from today and will be worn in competition for the first time in the opening round of Sky Super Rugby Aotearoa from February 26th when the Blues, Chiefs, Crusaders, Highlanders and Hurricanes start their 2021 campaigns.
For further information please visit adidas.com/rugby