Wallabies Jersey

Wallabies Jersey: The Australia Rugby Shirt

The Wallabies jersey is the rugby shirt worn by the Australian rugby team, also known as the Wallabies. It utilises Australia’s national sporting colours of green and gold.

Unlike most Australian sports teams the Wallabies use a gold jersey with green trim as opposed to a green jersey with yellow trim. This is due to the Springboks of South Africa, one of Australia’s main rugby rivals, using predominantly green with yellow trim being on the Springboks rugby jersey. The reduction of green in the Wallabies playing strip first began in 1961. However, in recent editions of the Wallabies jersey the green has become even further reduced.

The shorts and socks worn the by team have continued to be dark green. The away jersey is white with gold sleeves with white shorts and gold socks.

As with all professional rugby playing nations, the Australia rugby shirt has foregone the thick baggy cotton jerseys with collars of eras gone by, and adopted the skin tight, body-hugging jerseys with scientifically engineered materials, which were first showcased at the 2003 Rugby World Cup. However, unlike countries such as England and France, the Wallabies have stayed true to their traditional colours of gold and green, without much experimentation with other colours.

History of the Wallabies Rugby Jersey

The Australia rugby jersey first adopted the Australian green and gold colours for their rugby playing kit in 1928 when it was declared that all national teams should adopt the same representative colours – colours taken from Australia’s floral emblem the Golden Wattle. However, for times throughout the preceding thirty years the Wallabies had used variations of those colours anyway. Interestingly, the first team to have adopted those colours was the Australian cricket team when they toured England in 1899, which was the same year the first official British Isles rugby team toured Australia.

Originally, when the Australian rugby team first played they used primarily blue or red with a clearly displayed coat of arms. When World War One broke out it was considered unpatriotic to play rugby union while Australian soldiers were away at war. During this time rugby players converted to rugby league in droves. Although it is still a dominant sport, rugby union in Australia has never recovered compared to the institutions of rugby league and Australian rules football.

In the years following the Great War, Queensland was not represented in rugby union, so the Australian banner was carried solely by a New South Wales representative team. Since then, the 39 games played by the New South Wales against international rugby teams have been afforded test status. The reunification of the two rugby playing states occurred in 1929, which coincided with the roll out of the Australian national sporting colours the year before. Since then the green and gold, or gold and green as is the case of the Wallabies, has been used wherever possible. In times of a colour clash, the team now wears a white shirt with gold sleeves, but over the years there have been more drastic colour changes, such as in 1933 when they wore blue to avoid a clash with the Springboks.

Wallabies KooGa Rugby Jersey

The Wallabies rugby jersey has been sponsored and supplied by KooGa Rugby since 2010. Their first edition of the Australia rugby shirt premiered on Australia Day in 2010. Wallabies of the time Benn Robinson, Matt Giteau and Berrick Barnes were called on to model the new Wallaby jersey. However, only Barnes represented Australia at the next year’s Rugby World Cup, and even he nearly missed the tournament through concussion related issues. Robinson missed the tournament through injury and Matt Giteau was infamously dropped earlier that year.

The new KooGa rugby jersey was marketed as bullet-proof and indestructible and was said to even contain hydrosteel and carbon fibre. As with most modern rugby shirts worn by professional players, the material is incredibly light and helps to control body temperature.

KooGa also provides the jerseys to most of the Australian Super Rugby teams, namely the ACT Brumbies, Melbourne Rebels, Queensland Reds and the Western Force. They will continue to provide the Australia rugby shirts until at least the 2013 Australia British and Irish Lions tour.

Wallabies Canterbury Rugby Jersey

Before KooGa won the tender to provide the Wallabies rugby jerseys, international rugby supplier Canterbury of New Zealand had been the kit sponsor for ten years. Their editions of the Wallaby rugby jersey had varying levels of success, but unfortunately their tenure ended with the infamous ‘man bra’ rugby jersey. The shirt, which premiered at the 2007 Rugby World Cup, had a pale strip across the chest that drew comparisons to the appearance of a bra. Canterbury are still active in supplying elite level rugby kits, and still provide the rugby jerseys for the rugby powerhouse team, the Springboks as well as the Scotland and United States representative rugby teams.

 

The Australian Rugby Team:

The Australian rugby team has been using the name Wallabies for over a hundred years. In 1908 the Australian national team went on its first tour of North America and the United Kingdom. In a recent tour the New Zealand national team had been coined the All Blacks, most likely due to their all black playing strip. Therefore, it was considered appropriate for the Australia team to have a distinguishing name of their own. After a number of animals, such as the ‘rabbits’, were considered, the name Wallabies was eventually settled on.

A wallaby is a native Australian marsupial. It looks like a kangaroo but is smaller. There are many different types of wallaby and they can be found throughout Australia. However, they face a number of predators and, as herbivores, have their feeding areas impacted by urbanization.

The Australian rugby team are consistently ranked amongst the top three international teams in the world on the IRB world rankings. They have won the Rugby World Cup twice, which along with the South Africa and New Zealand teams, is the most any team have won it. Every year they compete in the Rugby Championship, formerly the Tri Nations, against those two teams and now Argentina.


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