In addition to having one of the least original team nicknames in all of sports, the Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks have kept things pretty unoriginal throughout their long tenure with XBlades as their kit sponsor, but times they are a-changing…
For 2018, the Sharks have mixed things up, and so have XBlades – the Aussie rugby league brand has debuted a new, more grown up, logo for their 2018 NRL jersey designs, and they’ve put it here on a home shirt that twists the Sharks recipe.
So, instead of the sky blue shirt with a thick horizontal white band running across the middle that has become so familiar, we have a sky blue shirt with a thick white chevron across the centre of the design.
And it’s great, isn’t it? It still feels very much like a Sharks jersey, but with a cool modern twist that feels unquestionably a rugby league design.
It’s always good to see a team mixing things up beyond the standard palette swap for their change shirt, and the away design here does just that, but still feeling thematically in step with the home.
So instead of a thick white chevron in the middle of the design, we have a black shirt with a partial sky blue chevron at the top of the chest.
It’s safe to say that XBlades’ designs haven’t always set our world on fire in the last few years, but this feels like a massive step in the right direction for the Aussie brand – there’s a cleanliness and simplicity to these jerseys that straddles the classic/modern line in a really satisfying way.
They’re also some of the most interesting and fresh-feeling Sharks jerseys in years, too, and that’s no bad thing at all.