It’s not unreasonable to expect a team called the Blues to wear a blue uniform. Perhaps when they’re playing away from home and there’s a jersey clash then an alternative strip is needed but when at home, blue should be the order of the day.
In the Blues’ clash with the Highlanders on Saturday evening, however, the home side ran out wearing their alternative white strips. Still, it gets worse.
Moments later, the Highlanders – who also normally wear blue – ran out also wearing their alternate strips.
The end result was that the Blues were wearing a white strip (“light blue” according to experience SKY Sports commentator Grant Nesbitt) with the Highlanders wore dark grey.
Fans were quick to take to Twitter to lambast the jersey situation.
— Ryan Nixon (@NewYorkNixon) June 27, 2020
Good to see we’re still rolling with the away jerseys for the home team ?
— Guy Heveldt (@GuyHeveldt) June 27, 2020
— Capt Commentary Cat BCom????? (@Commentary_cat) June 27, 2020
Hold on, are the highlanders wearing the Auckland blues jerseys? #BLUvHIG
— Kolose Feaunati (@kolosefeaunati) June 27, 2020
Which team is which? I'm losing my mind #BLUvHIG
— ? Josh G Spark ? (@_OUA_) June 27, 2020
#BLUvHIG commentator getting mixed up at kick off over the fact that Blues are wearing white and the Highlanders wearing a sort of dark blue/green
— Andy Render (@AndyR1705) June 27, 2020
— Rhys Knott (@buck_mitchell) June 27, 2020
“Who’s playing tonight?”
“And who’s that in the white?”
— Jason Pine (@pineyzb) June 27, 2020
— Jenna Lloyd (@JennaMareeLloyd) June 27, 2020
Fans have regularly vented their frustration this year at the New Zealand alternate strips – both in terms of how they look and when they’re actually used.
When the Highlanders travelled to Pretoria to take on the Bulls earlier this season and wore their alternate strip, the two teams clashed horribly, making it almost impossible to distinguish between the two sides.
At half time, the Bulls were forced into swapping their jerseys to make the teams more easily identifiable.
While the two sides were easy enough to tell apart in tonight’s match, it’s difficult to understand why the powers that be decided that either team should don their alternative strip – let alone both of them.
The only reasonably plausible answer is that New Zealand Rugby and the clubs want to generate more sales of their secondary strip – which is hard to do when they’re not being worn.
The Highlanders and the Blues are the only two NZ Super Rugby teams that share the same primary colour for their jersey. Both the Chiefs and the Crusaders primarily wear black but their ascent colours make their kits more distinguishable. Still, it wouldn’t be a surprise if, when the rivals clash tomorrow afternoon, at least one team is wearing their alternative strip.
It would be ludicrous if both changed kits, however, as was the case in Auckland tonight.
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