There has been a positive reaction for the most part to the new kits for New Zealand franchises ahead of the 2024 Super Rugby Pacific season.
For the first time in over 20 years, the teams will field a kit not produced by Adidas with Australasian brand Classic taking over the manufacturing role.
The brand is off to a good start with a strong focus on heritage within the design of the kits for all four teams.
The home and away strip for the Aucklanders is clean and simple with some brilliant detailing in the home kit particularly.
“The 2024 Blues jersey reflects that diversity with a primary focus on the four tides that surround us – the Manukau Harbour, Waitematā Harbour, Kaipara Harbour and the Hokianga,” the official website wrote.
That Blues jumper is mint 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥
— #Scoop🐻 | #Rhabula ☕️ (@Rugby_Scoop) November 22, 2023
In addition to those strips was a retro kit rolling back the years to 1997 in stunning fashion, much to the delight of fans who were willing to pay up.
97 in the house pic.twitter.com/xghVL6zq6L
— The Blues (@BluesRugbyTeam) November 22, 2023
Classic continued their good form in the Chiefs kit with three beautiful strips, from the simple home jersey to the detailed away jersey and a creative and vibrant training strip.
Helloooo new kit 😍 pic.twitter.com/KxEb2elkJR
— Gallagher Chiefs (@ChiefsRugby) November 22, 2023
The defending champions are yet to reveal if Classic has designed a retro strip for them but the manufacturer has done a brilliant job with the home and away kits.
The design is simple and clean paying tribute to Aoraki Mt Cook – which symbolises much more than just a mountain.
“Aoraki Mt Cook stands tall as the highest point, guarding our people, our team, our home. This is not one mountain, or one region, this is a mountain range. A landscape. Similarly, our rivers flow from the mountains to the sea with unstoppable force, a symbol of the strength of our on-field team and our off-field members and fans,” the Crusaders website wrote.
Fans felt the away kit in particular was one that caught the eye.
The away kit is toooo clean 🔥
— Remarkables Rugby (@remarkablerugby) November 22, 2023
Perhaps the only kit that has taken a bit of flack was the Highlanders home strip which was knocked down as being too plain.
Way too blue once again, don’t talk about “colours” when it’s just one colour
— nary ⓥ (@yeacouldbekeen) November 21, 2023
However, the kits represent the area and its “Southern Lights”, a phenomenon typical to the area and one that is aligned with the spirit of the team.
“Drawing inspiration from the enchanting Southern Lights, the Aurora Australis, the training jersey and teamwear showcase the vivid colours and formations and make for a distinctive jersey. A very Southern phenomenon, the Aurora Australis, visible during the Autumn and Winter months, capturing the dynamic and vibrant spirit of the Highlanders team,” the official website wrote.
The final franchise from New Zealand certainly did not disappoint with Classic producing the goods again with a simple home strip with subtle detailing in their typical yellow.
However, it is in the black second kit where the detailing brilliantly comes alive. It is a great example of how less can be more with kit designs.
The Hurricanes have also launched their new men’s and Poua jerseys for the new season – pretty cool. pic.twitter.com/fZxSpVuqRh
— Rucked – The Rugby Magazine (@rucked_mag) November 22, 2023