As we enter September, we can happily celebrate the return of the Aviva Premiership season.
After a weekend where Saracens picked up from their triumphs last season with a comprehensive victory over Worcester, and Bristol nearly stealing the march against Harlequins at Wembley, we’ve taken 15 minutes out to cast our eager eyes over the 2016/17 kits, and given our rating on this years’ offering.
Let us know what you think of our ratings on Facebook & Twitter!
Bath Rugby Kit 16/17
Encompassing the traditional blue and white hoops, the 2016/17 Bath jerseys are manufactured by Canterbury, and continue the longstanding relationship between the rugby club and Dyson.
Breaking away from tradition, the away shirt is a visual delight. Encompassing a striking grey design, the supporters jersey features a traditional polo-shirt collar. Kudos to Bath and Canterbury on mixing things up this year!
Home Shirt Rating: 7/10 – Certainly follows tradition, but very similar in appearance and style to previous versions.
Away Shirt Rating: 8/10 – It’s nice to see a change on this front, moving forward significantly from last years white strip.
Bristol Rugby Kit 16/17
Setting themselves apart from the rest, Bristol are one of a few clubs that develop their own product range in-house. From playing shirts to hoodies and tees, the kit falls under the ‘Bristol Sport’ banner.
The blue and white hoops are retained from last year, however the kit now features a prominent red panel across the top of the jersey and down the side panels. The red streak continues effortlessly down the shorts. This years away shirt is a little less inspiring, featuring large yellow panels with blue arm detail.
Home Shirt Rating: 7/10 – A great jersey for their Premiership return, as the introduction of red makes a real impact.
Away Shirt Rating: 5/10 – A little uninspiring, looking more like a football shirt than anything else.
Exeter Rugby Kit 16/17
As the Chiefs look to go one better than last years’ final, they continue their kit partnership with Samurai after signing a new contract in April of this year. After revealing a striking Cup shirt for 2016/17 inspired by the northern lights,there has been no further announcement on the new home and away kits for the Exeter Chiefs.
The Chiefs state on their website that new kit will be available ahead of the Premiership & European campaigns, so we will have to wait and see what happens!
Home Shirt Rating: N/A – No information as of yet!
Away Shirt Rating: N/A – No information as of yet!
Gloucester Rugby Kit 16/17
The X-Blades supporters jerseys for this year both feature prominent collars, an element that proves to be popular amongst fans of the sport.
Last years playing kit proved to be a little bit of a disappointment for fans, featuring a core design that appeared outdated and behind on the times. It’s safe to say that the designers have overcome this for 2016/17.
In what is a clean and structured design for 2017, the Pro version contains a minimalist collar, prominent Mitsubishi sponsorship and clean red & white hoops. The away shirt follows suit, with yellow, red and black print.
Home Shirt Rating: 8/10 – Clean and modern, Gloucester’s 2016/17 home shirt is amongst the best out there.
Away Shirt Rating: 7/10 – The perfect alternative shirt, featuring all of the perks of the home jersey in an interesting suite of colours.
Harlequins Rugby Kit 16/17
Celebrating a centenary of 150 years, the Harlequins kit this year has been crafted to represent this in it’s entirety. Adidas have worked hard to create a home & away shirt that represents the colours of the early team photos, yet including modern features (such as ClimaLite construction) that you’d expect to see on a 2017 jersey.
For collectors, this is definitely one to get. The crest featured on the jersey is a special edition 150th coat of arms, finished off in a stunning gold.
The away kit is equally striking, with Adidas describing their inspiration as the clubs ‘attacking style of play’. The clubs bold colours feature heavily, and the style certainly represents a unique jersey to fans of the ‘Quins.
Home Shirt Rating: 7/10 – A supporters must, celebrating 150 years of rich heritage with old-school colours and a one-off crest.
Away Shirt Rating: 7/10 – A unique design, featuring a vibrant & eclectic mix of colours.
Leicester Tigers Rugby Kit 16/17
Instantly, we notice a difference with the new kit of the Tigers. Longstanding sponsorship partners Caterpillar are no more, replaced instead by Holland & Barrett.
The KooGa kit is clean and modern in its construction. The instantly recongisable green, white and red hoops feature throughout the jersey, while the back of the shirt features a white section for the ease of printing numbers. Is this a necessary component for a supporters shirt? Probably not!
At £55.00, it sits in the middle of the price bracket of this years’ club offerings. The alternative kit for year is a bright florescent offering, with the same clean and functional style of the home kit. The white space for numbers looks out of place in contrast to the yellow – massively affecting the overall aesthetics of the jersey.
Home Shirt Rating: 7/10 – A functional design with good use of club colours. Supporters shirt would look better without the white number panel on the back.
Away Shirt Rating: 6/10 – Continuing the trend of fluro kits in the Aviva Premiership. White number panel looks even worse on this shirt.
Newcastle Rugby Kit 16/17
The Newcastle Falcons are the sole Gilbert representative remaining in the Aviva Premiership.
Both jerseys feature a clean set of colours, and are clean in their design. Question marks hang over the style of collars across both tops, while a couple of questions are asked of the prominent orange fluorescent away jersey.
The home jersey is clean and elegant. The dark grey detail perfectly offsets the black composition, while the sponsor positions aren’t overpowering at all. In all, a solid jersey for the Falcons as they look to consolidate their Premiership status this season.
Home Shirt Rating: 7/10 – Clean and solid design, with a classy dark grey and black colour palette.
Away Shirt Rating: 6/10 – Similar to the home shirt, but questions have to be asked of the bright orange colour choice. Subjective opinions welcome!
Northampton Saints Rugby Kit 16/17
2016/17 sees the Saints move away from Burrda and into the grasps of Italian sportswear manufacturers Macron, after signing a historic 10 year deal back in March.
Macron are enjoying a growing reputation in the team kit arena, having signed lucrative deals with football teams over the past few years. To further quality this, they have made a solid start in rugby’s top flight with Northampton Saints.
Both kits are clean and well constructed – amongst the best out there this year. Questions have to be asked, however, on how a £65.99 price tag for supporters replica can be justified. To put it into context, this is £15 more than Worcester’s Under Armour replica.
Home Shirt Rating: 7/10 – Clean designs with minimal sponsor disruption. Marked down for the £65.99 price tag of a supporters jersey.
Away Shirt Rating: 7/10 – Interesting design, with a well constructed upper. Again, marked down for the £65.99 price tag of a supporters jersey.
Sale Sharks Rugby Kit 16/17
The 2016 Sale Sharks replica shirt is heavily based on the design of 2015, however featuring a cleaner overall look and feel.
Manufactured by Samurai, the supporters shirt is a fully sublimated variant with a curved colour and featuring a ‘one-button’ construction. While the shirt may be some way away from the quality seen from the likes of Canterbury, it’s a solid new entry for the Sale Sharks.
The away shirt seen at the weekend loss to Newcastle Falcons is the 2015 variant – it remains to be seen whether a new entry for this year will be released.
Home Shirt Rating: 6/10 – Solid design and construction, if nothing spectacular compared to other jerseys this year.
Away Shirt Rating: N/A – Last years kit used at season opener.
Saracens Rugby Kit 16/17
A new supplier beckons for the Aviva Premiership champions, as BLK take over the reigns from Nike, who take a backseat from premier British rugby.
This year’s home kit moves away from the ombre pattern, encompassing contrasting black panels with subtle, impactful piping. Initial feedback from the fans seems to be promising, while the away kit features a sublimation print of the Saracens club badge towards the bottom of the jersey. Interestingly, this only features on the supporters shirt – the ‘Pro’ jersey features no such pattern.
Home Shirt Rating: 7/10 – Classy entrance from BLK, providing a solid entry to replace the outgoing giants of Nike.
Away Shirt Rating: 6/10 – A bit of a stark contrast from the home jersey, and differing versions may annoy supporters.
Wasps Rugby Kit 16/17
As Under Armour continue to increase professional partnership with UK sports teams, the Wasps jerseys for this year certainly stand out.
Featuring a familiar design across the home and away variants, the jerseys each feature textured mesh panels, while grippy print on the front seems to be the way forward for Under Armour.
Both jerseys are quite striking, although very similar in design. When it comes to supporters purchasing one, it’ll simply be down to colour preference.
Home Shirt Rating: 7/10 – Clean and well constructed, Under Armour continue to make waves in professional rugby.
Away Shirt Rating: 7/10 – Simply a colour port of the home kit, the away shirt offers a solid alternative for fans.
Worcester Warriors Rugby Kit 16/17
The merry go round that is kit supplier changes continued at Sixways, as Worcester ended a longstanding agreement with KooGa to sign with Under Armour. This year also saw the longstanding main sponsorship deal with Worcester Bosch come to an end.
Under Armour are making waves in professional sport across the board, and we think this continues with Worcester’s new home jersey. The blue and yellow colour scheme remain, while the silicone gripper featured across the front of the home jersey is made up of mini Worcester ‘helmet’s, which is a nice touch.
The away jersey has certain divided attention, with many thinking the diamond patterns featured across the front of the jersey is a little messy.
Nevertheless, it’s a solid entry for Under Armour as they begin their three year deal with Worcester Warriors.
Home Shirt Rating: 8/10 – A mini revolution of sorts for Worcester, with a new kit supplier and main sponsor.
Away Shirt Rating: 6/10 – Seems a little forced, and seems to be dividing opinion amongst fans.
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