There comes a time in the life of any mildly popular specialist interest website when you wonder if you haven’t made a terrible mistake starting this whole thing in the first place. After just over four years, we think we’ve had our moment.
Here is an incomplete list of things that we’d rather do than review the Scarlets 2018/19 away jersey from Macron sports…
- Tackle Ross Moriarty
- Be tackled by Ross Moriarty
- Try to explain the rules of the breakdown to someone who’s never watched rugby before
- Watch a loop of every single massively unfunny try celebration gif/video ever created for eight straight hours
- Listen to James Haskell read the audio book version of his own autobiography
- Go to Pride with Israel Folau
- Spend an evening in the company of a bunch of people who refer to the game of rugby as ‘rugger’
- Leave the house wearing the new Scarlets away shirt.
Okay, maybe not the last one. You see, it’s not a great exaggeration to say that the new Scarlets away shirt is a frontrunner for the worst looking rugby shirt of the season.
Let’s talk about the first problem. As we tackled with the home shirt, the Scarlets shirt this season has a scarcely believable number of sponsor logos – 20 if you include the Macron logos. That was enough to render a pretty nice and clean home shirt distractingly busy… so you probably don’t want to make the away shirt really busy when you’re already dealing with double-figure images all over the design, right?
Wrong! In truth, the weird semi-faded slapping of a load of clip-art level heraldic symbols on the bottom of the design would look dreadful if there wasn’t a single other thing on the design. But as we’ve covered, that’s far from true here.
And that’s before we even get into the colours – blue and white would be fine, but do we really need to throw red and yellow into the mix, too? Was this shirt not ugly enough? And don’t even get us started on the ‘wave’ graphic on the back of the design…
It’s a shame, because we actually really like the basic concept behind this jersey. It’s part of a three-year plan for the Scarlets to better engage with the wider Scarlets region outside of Llanelli, and so this first one is designed to represent Ceredigion.
Thus, the wave on the back relates to the county’s connection to the sea and coast, while the symbols on the front – including the Arms of Gwaithfoed, seahorses, dragons and eagles – are a nod to the various counties in the region.
It’s just a shame that all the elements have come together to create something quite this bad. We’d say we hoped next year’s ‘Three Counties, One Region’ shirt will be better than this, but it’s hard to imagine how it could be much worse…