Kenya are something of an anomaly in the fast-paced world of rugby sevens. Despite the fact that their 15-a-side team has never qualified for a World Cup, or even played a test match against a tier one nation, Kenya Sevens have risen to become one of the better and more dangerous teams in the international sevens, reaching the semi-finals of the last two World Cups, and currently ranked 10th in the Sevens World Series all-time table, ahead of the likes of Scotland,Canada, USA and Japan…
With that in mind, then, the release of a new Kenya Sevens shirt is a pretty big deal then, and once again we have a very modern, eye-catching design produced by Kenya’s long-term kit supplier Samurai. The UK company has certainly tried to make something a little bit different here, including a variety of nice little design motifs, all of which can pretty much be summed up as ‘all the bloody chevrons’.
The most striking feature of the design are the contrasting white and green chevron patterns running up the sides of the shirt. It’s striking, clean, and even gives the Möbius strip effect when the contrasting colours intersect around the ribcage. That’s not all for the chevrons however, as the main body of the jersey also features an upward-facing then chevron pattern running the entire length of it, becoming more pronounced as you move towards the collar, and turning into more traditional hoops on the sleeves.
None more chevron-y then? Well yes, but that’s not a bad thing. We think the two elements combine really well together, and, like the Wales Sevens shirt we looked at earlier this week, there’s a dynamism to this design. The arrow-shaped chevrons make you think of speed, directness – very rugby sevens, and Kenya Sevens in particular.
The red of the body is contrasted with the traditional dark green, around the sleeves, side vents and around the shoulders, and we also get a Kenyan flag between the shoulder blades to round out the ornamentation. It all looks very sharp, and in fact the only bit of the design we can’t really vibe with are the italicised numbers on the back. They look a bit like they’ve been washed on too high a heat and it’s melted.
That said, we do like our sevens shirts to be a bit more crazy than this – that’s the point of sevens jerseys after all – and while this shirt is no shrinking violet, it’s rather refined and demure compared to some other recent designs.
With Olympic qualification already secured, this season will be a chance for Kenya to focus themselves and try to get their best players prepared for Rio next summer. Anyone who’s seen Kenya play will know they’re one of the most exciting, athletic teams on the circuit, and now they have one of the classiest shirts to boot.
SHIT/GOOD RATING: Good