While Southland have struggled off the field since the end of their long string of Ranfury Shield defences in 2010, and the subsequent financial strife that led to the Stags being relegated to the NPC Championship in 2011. One thing they have been leading the way in, however, is bold jerseys, and this year is no exception.
For the past two seasons, Southland have been wearing a very striking jersey that put a modernist spin on the Stags’ classic maroon jersey, adding white sleeves to a shirt that had a giant stag drawn on the front of it. Now, don’t get us wrong, it’s hard to draw a stag, and while they went for ‘proud and majestic’ the result was more ‘grumpy and constipated’.
This year then, they’ve opted to sensibly sidestep the whole ‘deer face’ minefield and gone for a rather classy silhouette of a stag in amongst some trees that dominates the bottom of the jersey.
And we have to say, the results are pretty damn successful – the contrast between the maroon of the shirt and the striking gold silhouette of the stag and the undergrowth really works well, and really compliments the gold sleeve cuffs, badge and CCC logo.
We really like the way that the detailed woodland scene carries on all the way around the jersey – most shirts that go for a super-busy, super-modern jersey design these days opt to keep things simple and clean at the back, but here the whole shirt feels like it’s telling a bit of a story.
With the likes of Jimmy Cowan and Lima Sopoaga in the fold, the Stags will be hoping to get back to happier times this season, and they’ll be doing so wearing one of the most distinctive new shirts in the Mitre 10 Cup.