Rugby Australia Chairman Hamish McLennan had the deciding vote in choosing both the public's and ex-player's favourite jersey
The jersey Australia wore when they beat England 12-6 in the 1991 Rugby World Cup final at Twickenham has been determined the best looking kit in the Wallabies’ history – and the template for future shirts.
On Tuesday, the Sydney Morning Herald gave readers the chance to vote on their favourite Wallabies jersey through a poll. The decision would help inform design choices from this year onwards, with the results being taken into account by former Wallabies who met to have their say on Thursday.
Some 13,389 readers voted on what colour of jersey they believed should be used. Three of the jerseys in particular dominated the poll, with 30% of votes for the Wallabies number worn by Nick Farr-Jones’s side that beat England 12-6 in the 1991 World Cup final at Twickenham.
The adidas three-stripe jersey from 1984 recorded 25% of votes, which was narrowly ahead of the 1999 shirt (22%) that has become synonymous with the golden era of rugby in Australia.
Before players from Australia’s illustrious past gathered in both Sydney and Brisbane on Thursday to settle on a favourite, Rugby Australia chairman Hamish McLennan spoke of the poll result: “A picture says a thousand words and this shows the madness of our inconsistency,” he said. “We are green and gold, and I underscore gold.”
“The rugby fans who voted will no doubt have a major bearing and influence on how we go forward and I think it’s extremely illustrative. We’re listening to the public because Australians own the Wallabies.”
This sentiment was also echoed by Wallabies great Simon Poidevin, who was in attendance on Thursday.
Poidevin said: “I thought the adidas gold jersey was probably the best one I had. It was a rich gold and probably ahead of its time in terms of comfort and versatility on the field.”
Ultimately, the final vote came down to the 1991 and 1984 jerseys. McLennan had the unenviable task of picking the winner, and the future of the Australia jersey, a hotly disputed topic. Voting for the 1991 jersey decided the outcome of the result, and it’s hard to argue against the decision.
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