In recognition of 125 years of rich history, the St.George Queensland Reds have gone back to the future by announcing Queensland will play in maroon jerseys for the entire 2019 Super Rugby season.
Manufactured by Queensland Rugby Union’s (QRU) new apparel partner Dynasty Sport, the Reds officially unveiled their new-look maroon playing kit at today’s QRU Long Lunch at Brisbane City Hall.
Queensland Rugby Union Interim CEO David Hanham said: “It’s important for us to reconnect with our roots.
“Queensland has enjoyed some of its finest moments playing in a maroon jersey over the decades.
“In speaking to Brad, the QRU Board and our wider stakeholders, it was an easy decision for us to return to maroon full-time – the colour we first wore in 1894.
“Brad is doing a great job of building the culture at Ballymore and running out in maroon jerseys will fill the players and our fans with a pride shared by all Queenslanders, wherever they may be in the world,” said Hanham.
Queensland played its first representative game in 1882 against New South Wales and had adopted maroon socks to go with a white playing jersey and shorts by 1887. In 1894 the QRU changed the jersey colour to maroon to reflect the colour of Queen Victoria’s robes – and the jersey remained maroon until 2006.
In the past 12 years the jersey became increasingly red, although over the last two seasons Queensland has worn maroon in three matches against New South Wales.
A proud Queenslander and former State of Origin representative with the Queensland Maroons, Reds Head Coach Brad Thorn said he was excited about the change.
“When you think about representing sport in Queensland, you think about maroon. It’s great to recognise our history and be back in the maroon jersey again,” said Thorn.
Also unveiled today at Brisbane City Hall was the “History of the Kit” – a visual exhibition by QRU archivist Conor Feehely that showcases the 136-year history of Queensland Rugby’s representative uniform which will be on display at Reds home games during the 2019 Super Rugby season.
Today’s Kit Launch complements the formal public launch of the QRU’s “Believe Campaign” which starts with a call to arms to existing and prospective St.George Queensland Reds members to renew or purchase Reds memberships for the 2019 Vodafone Super Rugby season
Queensland Rugby Union – History of the Kit overview
1882 – Reds Born
- The first year of Queensland’s representative Rugby sees the Northerners travel to Sydney to face New South Wales in red-and-black hooped jerseys of the Brisbane City Club.
- The First XV “Reds” tour established creating a rivalry now over 130 years-old
1887 – First Maroon
- The first maroon was introduced to Queensland’s kit
- The new white jersey and shorts was contrasted with maroon socks and embroidered NRU (Northern Rugby Union) emblem
1894 – First Maroon Jersey
- When the widespread clubs of the NRU affiliate to become Queensland Rugby Union in 1893, the decision was made to adopt a maroon jersey in recognition of Queen Victoria’s royal robes.
- The decade between the Reds’ first jersey and a maroon jersey being worn for the first time in 1894, Queensland wore dark and light blues, white and even ‘chocolate’
- With the exception of experimenting again with hoops in the mid-late 1990s, Queensland wore the same maroon jersey with simple white embroidery continuously for 112 years
1910 – Oldest surviving QRU Jersey
- QRU No. 292, Scrumhalf Don Gunn’s 1910 maroon jersey and socks are the oldest known surviving Queensland Rugby kit
1934 – First Koala Logo
- Queensland Rugby’s Iconic Koala, chosen as the Red’s emblem as part of a campaign to protect the marsupial from increasingly industrialised poaching. The mascot has been known as Ted, Scrummer, Rusty, and Bally over the 80+ year tenure at Queensland Rugby
1982 – Centenary Celebrations
- As the team cemented its position as the finest provincial side in the world, a QRU centenary patch was added to the traditional maroon jersey, with white embroidery and collar
1992 – Super 6 Champions
- Queensland claim the 1992 Super 6 tournament in a traditional maroon jersey and navy shorts
1994 – Super 10 Champions
- Queensland claim the 1994 Super 10 tournament in a traditional maroon jersey and navy shorts
1995 – Super 12 Champions
- Queensland claim the 1995 Super 12 tournament in a traditional maroon jersey and navy shorts
2006 – Last Maroon Jersey
- Queensland wear the last all-maroon jersey for over a decade, before a three-year transition from maroon to red begins
2007-2009 – Transition to Red
- Transition aims to modernise and refresh the Reds apparel range. Over these three seasons the jersey transitioned towards a ‘Post-Box red’
2011 – Super Rugby Champions
- Queensland claim their 4th Super win and the first of the modern SANZAR era in vibrant red
2017 – Maroon Heritage Jersey
- The surprise introduction of the ‘Heritage’ jersey delights fans in a Super Rugby match against New South Wales at home – more than a decade after Queensland was last seen in traditional maroon
2018 – Return of Maroon Heritage Jersey
- Following its success in 2017, the Reds played both their Super Rugby matches against New South Wales in the maroon ‘Heritage’ jersey
2019 – Reds Return to Maroon
- Queensland Rugby returns to a maroon jersey to continue a legacy created 125 years earlier