When Saracens and Nike parted ways two seasons ago, it was a sad day – not just because the US giant had produced some very nice and original kits for the London club in that time, or because they had any huge history with the brand like say, Toulouse, but because it felt like another nail in the coffin of Nike’s involvement in rugby.
But like all the best onscreen romances, the story didn’t end there. Toulouse found their way back to Nike last season after a mixed three years with BLK, and now for 2018/19 Sarries have done likewise.
Nike have developed a bit of a reputation over the last few years for keeping things clean, simple and lovely – though at times they’ve maybe gone a bit too simple. And the none more black new Sarries home shirt is, it must be said, veering into that territory.
The on-field jersey at least has the triangular grip material to break up what is probably the cleanest and least ornamented jersey we’ve seen since Bath’s all-white away shirt last season.
To some of course, this minimalist approach is music to the ears – if you took the sponsors off, this is about as classic and old-fashioned a Saracens jersey as you could get… asides from the t-shirt collar, the skin-tight fit and the super-stretchy dramatically named modern fabrics, of course… but welcome to 2018 in that regard.
In truth though, it’s not quite as plain as all that – a closer look at the sides of the jersey and you’ll spot a rather nice grey and black diagonal striped panel running up the ribs on either side and under the arms.
It’s typical of Nike’s minimalists approach to design flourishes, but one that we really love – it elevates this above the ‘plain t-shirt’ school of clean design and shows that there’s been a bit more consideration in the design process.
That said, it is still VERY plain, and compared to the outre shirts that Nike have made for Sarries in the past, not the most exciting. A smart, clean and considered design then, but not one to get the pulses racing.