This is the third season of the tie-up between Irish kit supplier O’Neills and then Super League champions St Helens, but it’s not quite gone to plan so far with two respectable but ultimately disappointing fourth place finishes – they’ll be hoping to get back to their position at the top of the table in 2017 wearing two very interesting jerseys…
Last year’s home shirt was controversial, to say the least, with it’s unconventional and polarising huge low chevron, and it’s perhaps in response to that that O’Neills has returned to the traditional deep V of two years ago this time around.
While on the face of it this shirt is very classic with its deep V and classy red accents on the collar, there’s a little more going on when we get up close and personal with that chevron.
Marled designs (ie designs that look like the that heathered pattern on every grey gym tshirt you’ve ever owned) are very in this season, but this is the first time we’ve seen the marl effect used on a specific aspect of the design. It certainly gives the chevron an interesting, very modern-looking texture.
If the marled look is used subtley on the home shirt, it’s the core component of the away design, which also happens to be one of the coolest and most unusual jerseys we’ve seen this season.
So as a base we have a very cool, very usual blue marled jersey as the base, and then rather than a chevron, we have a very unusual football-style diagonal sash made up of four stripes of gold and white.
The stripes aren’t just stripes of course – O’Neills calls them ‘shard stripes’ and that’s pretty accurate. They look like they’ve been smashed in the middle, and this shardy effect is replicated on the sleeve cuffs, which are in super cool and contrasting gold and white.
We really like the modern twist given to the classic Saints home shirt design this year, and it’s surely going to please fans, but the real star of this show is that stunning, unusual away shirt.
With a unique design, some very on-trend elements, and perhaps the best colour pattern of any shirt we’ve seen this year, we don’t have any hesitation in giving it our first Super League Gold Award.