Canterbury renews British & Irish Lions partnership

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 20: (L-R) Ben Calveley, managing director of the British & Irish Lions, Andy Long, CEO of Pentland Brands, Manu Tuilagi and Adam Balding director of rugby of Moseley rugby club pose with the Moseley Club shirt as Canterbury renews The British & Irish Lions partnership at Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club on November 20, 2019 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images for Canterbury)

We’re pleased to announce that will again partner with the British & Irish Lions to supply all of their on-field kit and training wear for the tour of South Africa in 2021.

The Lions wore Canterbury kits throughout the 2017 series, where they defied the odds to draw with New Zealand, and will do so again when the best of British and Irish rugby takes on the newly-crowned world champions in the summer of 2021 in what promises to be an incredible series.

As part of the partnership, Canterbury will also be offering Lions Origin Clubs – those teams who have produced a player who has gone on to play for the Lions – the opportunity to have their Canterbury kits personalised with the logo of the Lions Origin Club to proudly celebrate the achievement. 

To announce the news, we held media events at the homes of four amateur teams who have previously developed a Lions player and invited local junior teams along to take part in competitions to design a new kit.

The regional winners were then chosen by the Lions stars and the four winning kits will now be put to a public vote on social media – www.instagram.com/canterburynz to decide the overall winner. The victors will see their kit brought to life by Canterbury – complete with the commemorative Lions Origin Club logo. Fans can vote for their favourite kit by visiting the Canterbury or British & Lions social channels.

The events were held at:

  • Moseley Rugby Club, Birmingham – home of former Lions player Mike Teague. 2013 Lions tourist and Rugby World Cup finalist, Manu Tuilagi, was also in attendance.
  • Trebanos RFC, Swansea – where Wales and Lions star Justin Tipuric began his career.
  • Buccaneers RFC, Athlone – junior club of Ireland and Lions star Robbie Henshaw. Irish icon David Wallace, who toured South Africa with the Lions in 2009, was also in attendance.
  • Hawick RFC, Hawick – Jim Renwick, former Scotland and Lions centre, was in attendance.

Sean Kavanagh, Global Director of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship for Canterbury said: “We’re really proud to be extending our partnership with the British & Irish Lions and are excited to be working on the new kit designs already. At Canterbury, we want to show that rugby is a game for all and we are always looking at how we can help inspire the next generation of rugby players.

“As a grass roots club, producing a player who goes on to play at the top level is the highest accolade you can receive and we want clubs to be proud of this achievement and be able to shout about it.

“That is why we’ve introduced the Lions Origin Club logo to our Teamwear ranges for those clubs who have identified, nurtured and developed a special talent who has represented the Lions on the global stage. Hopefully, this can help to inspire the next generation of Lions stars.”

Ben Calveley, Managing Director at the British and Irish Lions, commented: “We are delighted to continue our successful partnership with Canterbury. Canterbury’s heritage with the Lions dates back to 1959 and their kit is loved by players and supporters alike. We look forward to working closely with them to develop the best technical kit available as well as an iconic Lions playing jersey for our Tour to South Africa in 2021.”

Justin Tipuric added: “Playing for the Lions and representing your country on the biggest stage is one of the pinnacles of a player’s career and I was honoured to have played a part in the 2013 & 2017 tours.

“Behind every player is a great support network of people who have helped them reach the very top and, for me, that starts with Trebanos where I started seriously playing rugby. It is fantastic that they can now display on their kit that they have helped to produce a Lions player. Hopefully, it will act as an inspiration for those players who will pull the jersey on and I would love to see another Lions player come from the club.”

The Lions kit is currently in the design process and will be revealed in 2020 – watch this space!

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