The 2015 NRL season was almost perfect for the Brisbane Broncos. Almost. They narrowly missed out on their seventh Premiership in heartbreaking fashion, suffering a golden point defeat to the Cowboys in what is already being described as one of the greatest and most epic Grand Finals ever.
How do you recover from something like that? Well, for starters, you don’t tear it all down and start again when you’ve come so close to winning it all, and that’s as true with the club’s on-field philosophy and personnel as it is with their home shirt from Nike.
The home shirt is identical to last year’s design, and that’s no bad thing at all, as it’s one of the coolest and most distinctive designs in the whole NRL. Again we’ve got the classy maroon and white top half, classily contrasted by the gradually thinning gold bars emerging from the bottom of the jersey.
What few changes this season’s home shirt does sport relate to the sponsors, and here they actually serve to make the shirt hang together even better than last year. By keeping them all yellow and white, it adds a nice uniformity to the design – an often-overlooked part of the equation when it comes to shirt sponsors in both codes of rugby.
While the home shirt is unchanged from last season, the away is a much more radical departure. Last season, the Broncos’ change strip was a yellow and maroon horizontal striped design, this year we have a primarily white shirt with a striking gold chevron design on the front.
It feels much more thematically in-sync with the home shirt than last season’s offering – the repeating design is of course very similar to the gradually thinning vertical bars on the home shirt, but with the more rugby league appropriate chevrons, though they go further up the front of the design than on the home.
The striking front and back chevrons are complimented by maroon side panels, gold sleeve cuffs, and a maroon collar. It all hangs together so very well. It’s perhaps not quite as clean and classy as the home design, but away shirts are supposed to be more out there than the home, and this definitely fits the bill. It’s stunning.
We loved the Broncos home shirt last season, and it’s just as stunning a second time around – if any shirt deserves to get a second season in the NRL, then it’s probably this one. The away shirt is a vast improvement over last year’s design – not only does it compliment the home design much more, but it does so without just being a simple palette-swap.
Two distinctive, classy shirts that make brilliant use of the Broncos’ hard to beat colour scheme – worth recipients of our first ever Rugby Shirt Watch Gold Award.