There are many reasons why the Queensland Maroons go into this year’s State Of Origin series on the back of eight straight successes over the New South Wales Blues. Having a squad that for years has contained the likes of Cameron Smith, Billy Slater, Greg Inglis and Jonathan Thurston, who formed the backbone of the Australian team that won the 2013 World Cup (and should have won in 2008 too) is a major one, though frankly having a much better jersey is the overriding psychological one (well, as far as we’re concerned).
Teaming up again with Canterbury, the newly-released jersey is a much simplified version of last year’s yellow-trimmed effort. With the two symmetrical badges on the chest and the stark AAMI logo in the centre being the only focal points, this clean, unfussy first impression is what we’ve loved about so many of Canterbury’s greatest hits this year. Ironically, it’s quite reminiscent of the treatment given to the New South Wales Waratahs home shirt this season – another clean look we absolutely love.
Then when you get in closer you notice the detail, with the delicate impressions just visible on the top quarter, which form one large chevron and others almost rippling off it. It’s just enough to push this effortlessly nice jersey into classic territory. We’ve got no attachment to either Queensland or NSW, and even though it’d be nice to see the Blues end their barren-patch in this fiercely-contested tribal derby series, we have to plump for the Maroons due to the piece of art they’ll be sporting.
It’s a wonder then that the training top, code-named the ‘Cane Toad’ is so bloody ridiculous. Surely the thick scales and slash marks are more velociraptor than amphibious pest? And why would a jersey celebrate one of the most destructive alien species in the country? Still, at least it’s better than the electro, energy drink rip-off of the NZ Warriors alternate jersey that the NSW Blues have for training. Yeesh! 2-0 to the men from Queensland before a ball is kicked.
SHIT/GOOD RATING: Bloody good, mate.