With the buzz of the Rugby World Cup gradually fading, it’s a great relief to all test match-starved rugby fans that the Six Nations is just around the corner. It’s a new dawn for England under Eddie Jones, of course, and his charges will be wearing shirts that are neither new or old… let’s dive in.
You’re probably familiar with these shirts, given that they’re the same basic Canterbury design as was worn at the Rugby World Cup, and very lovely they were too. This time of course the dispensing of the RWC2015 tournament badge means that the CCC logo is restored to the usual place on the right breast, and the main sponsor makes its customary return.
Your mileage may vary, of course, but we actually kind of prefer the regular layout to the World Cup design. The lack of a main sponsor can sometimes make very plain shirts look a bit sparse, especially when you have the all the adornment crammed into the top third, which can feel cluttered.
Other than that, we have all the same cool features that we saw on the World Cup shirt – the V-shaped ‘ball-deadening grip’ on the chest, the Canterbury 360° Loop neckline, and of course, the ultra-cool 3D injection-moulded rose.
So meet the new shirt, the same as the old shirt – and that’s not really a bad thing at all. Canterbury knows what it’s doing with England home shirts, and they’ve not messed around too much with the formula here.
In fact, the post-RWC variant of the design actually works better in some ways, as it feels a little more balanced up front, and to our vaguely OCD-minded brains, that’s rather pleasing.
The alternate shirt is a bit of a divisive one for England fans. On the one hand people didn’t like the fact that the hosts were made to wear it for the opening game of their own World Cup… on the other, that game was about the last time they were actually able to feel positive about England’s chances, so maybe it wasn’t so bad after all?
As with the World Cup shirt, this away shirt uses Canterbury’s now familiar policy of rendering the 360° Loop neckline and sleeves in a contrasting colour to the main body of the jersey.
Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but on balance here we’d have to say that the combination of the dark and light red is pretty unusual and fetching.
Naturally, as these designs are basically the same as the ones worn at the World Cup, they probably don’t have too many happy memories associated with them for England fans.
But the product on the field wasn’t the shirts’ fault, and we think it’s good that what was such a lovely design gets a second chance to be taken to heart by the England faithful.
It’s a new dawn for the England team, and the Six Nations gives them an instant chance to right some wrongs, and finally do these beautiful shirts justice.