For the last few seasons, the Brumbies have found themselves playing a New Zealand team on ANZAC weekend, and given that Canberra is one of the focal points of commemorative events over the ANZAC weekend in Australia, it’s fitting that the Brumbies have marked the occasion with a one-off jersey.
We’ll get this one out of the way straight off the bat – you know exactly how we feel about camo on rugby jerseys. We’ve said it time and time and time again, and there’s no getting away from the fact that, as a pattern it’s just plain ugly.
However, we think you’ll agree that this shirt is a bit of a different proposition to camo jerseys we’ve dealt with previously – not least in the taste stakes. In the past we’ve slated designs that use the pattern as being a bit crass, but of course, this isn’t some cynical fashion statement.
Unlike those shirts, this one has a tangible and appropriate reason for using the camouflage pattern – not only is it honouring the service of the Australian and New Zealand military, the 22 match-worn jerseys for Sunday’s game against the Crusaders will be auctioned off to raise money for Aussie military benevolent charity, Legacy.
From a visual perspective, it’s actually using that camouflage pattern in a rather interesting and sensitive way, too. Rather than pick any old camo pattern, the designers at Classic have opted to mimic the distinctive ‘Auscam‘ pattern used by the Australian Defence Force, though here rendered in grey and the dark blue that’s become so prominent for the Brumbies this season.
The use of this ‘jelly bean’ pattern elevates this above the ANZAC jersey the Brumbies wore last season, giving it an authentic association with the Australian military. Are we likely to wear one? Well, no… but as an appropriate and considered way of commemorating ANZAC day, it’s a very fitting tribute.