New Protea/Springbok jersey on track for Lions tour

SA Rugby and national teams apparel supplier and sponsor Canterbury say that they are on track to launch the new Springbok jersey ahead of this year’s three-Test series against the British and Irish Lions.

The jersey had to be changed in order to reflect the King Protea as the national emblem and this was to be done ahead of the international season which starts in June.

Following a decision by the South African Rugby Union’s (Saru’s) President’s Council last year, the new Bok jersey – and those of the juniors, women’s and Sevens teams – will in future have the Protea displayed on the left chest, with the leaping Springbok on the right.

The sponsor’s logo (Canterbury) , which was formerly on the right, will now be in the centre at the top of the jersey similar to the way that it was during the Rugby World cup.

According to the Star Newspaper acting SA Rugby managing director Andy Marinos, is expected to brief the President’s Council today about the new jersey and, possibly, when they plan to launch it.

The jersey and Springbok logo came under fire last year with both Sports Ministry and SA Rugby claiming ownership of the logo.

SA Ruby agreed to display the South African national sports emblem on the jersey which is the Protea and this forced a change in the positioning of items on the jersey.

Canterbury’s manager of sponsorships Spencer King said yesterday the new-look jersey was in the manufacturing process, but that it was up to SA Rugby to decide when the changed strip would be launched.

“The launch date has yet to be decided, but I’m confident it’ll be before the Lions tour here in June.

“Everything will have to be in place because we have to also consider the commercial aspect of it and its availability in the stores for the fans,”said King.

“We’re simply a supplier and sponsor; it’s SA Rugby’s call when they want to use it.”

The team will still be known as the Springboks and the Springbok will remain on the jersey but they could run into problems in the Rugby World cup as the IRB will only allow the Rugby World cup logo, Apparel sponsors logo and the national sports emblem (Protea) potentially leaving the Springbok logo out in the cold.

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