BLK have been supplying Connacht for three seasons now, the Irish province was the Australian firm’s first pro team in the Northern Hemisphere, and their relationship has been a fruitful one for both sides. BLK has rapidly expanded to become one of the biggest suppliers in rugby, while Connacht have graduated from the ‘other’ Irish team to being a team stacked with veteran internationals and some of Ireland’s most promising young talent.
There’s no new home shirt for the men in green this year – last year’s multi-coloured effort is sticking around for another year, but we are getting a new alternate shirt to mix things up a little bit, and that’s what we’re looking at here.
At first glance, there’s quite a lot of similar elements between last year’s design and this shirt – for starters the primary colour is again white, and once again there’s a definite modernist design philosophy here. There’s again a great emphasis on using the eagle of the club badge as a graphical focal point on the jersey’s body.
That’s pretty much where the similarities end, however. For starters, the secondary colour has been changed from blue to the more appropriate Connacht green, with blue relegated to a tertiary piping colour. It’s quite the turnaround given that the entirety of the rear on last year’s shirt was all-blue on the back, in one of last season’s more divisive jersey trends.
Like last year’s jersey, this is an unabashedly modern design, with a striking line-based eagle graphic dominating the front of the shirt. In addition to the eagle, the keen-eyed among you will also notice that there are five names repeated somewhat randomly over the shirt – the five counties of Connacht.
It’s a pretty cool design, although the haphazard place names kinda make it feel a bit like one of those old school air-pressure weather maps… though given the way the wind and rain tends to blow through the Sportsground in Galway, that’s perhaps equally appropriate!
While the way the five counties have been represented does look a little peculiar, we still like the overall design, and we really like the change-up of green as a secondary colour this time around.
Connacht might never be Ireland’s most fashionable team, but the last few years have show that they’re certainly not to be underestimated. The same is true of BLK – they’re not the biggest or most well-known rugby supplier out their, but their growth since they signed up with Connacht has been impressive, and here they’ve once again proved that they’re a real force to be reckoned with.
SHIT/GOOD RATING: Good