adidas have unveiled the New Zealand Super XV franchises’ ‘Away’ shirts for the 2013 season, with a common theme being the predominantly white colourway which all sides except the Highlanders will share.
Reigning champions the Chiefs boast the names of the provincial unions which contribute to the franchise (Counties Manukau, Waikato, Thames Valley, King Country and Bay of Plenty) on the collar, while the stylised Koru which is also used on the Home shirt is displayed on the front of the Away jersey, although the white-on-white tone makes for a more subtle look.
Made from adidas’ patented 100% Polyester Climacool material, the shirt is form fitting, lightweight yet strong, and breathable. The Chiefs and adidas logos are embroided on the front, with competition sponsors’ logos on the sleeves. Adding some flavour to the relatively conservative shirts are striking highlights in Light Scarlet and Collegiate Gold.
Following a break-through season when the Chiefs finally secured their first Super Rugby title, expectations will be high in Hamilton, but their title-defence will be made that little bit tougher with the absence of Sonny Bill Williams. Williams was dynamic in the midfield, and was responsible for igniting many of the stunning counter-attacking raids which helped the Chiefs to their inaugural win in 2012, but with plenty of other fire-power on the field the Chiefs will still pose defensive problems for every side in the competition.