What’s behind the Blues new strip?
The Blues won’t be wearing their regular team jerseys when they line up against the Crusaders at Eden Park tonight.
A one-off jersey will be worn to display the team’s association with Men’s Health Trust New Zealand (You) – which wants to encourage men to take more interest in their health.
Trust founder and chairman Colleen Thurston set up 'You' after nursing her late husband Graeme, who suffered a stroke and died in 2006.
Its purpose is to encourage men to proactively visit their doctors and take responsibility for living healthy lives, the charity says on its website.
Mrs Thurston was in Auckland High Court this week defending allegations of misusing money from the Thurston Family Trust as part of a dispute with her stepson over Mr Thurston’s estate.
The Men’s Health Trust NZ logo (You) will feature on the collar of the Blues jersey tonight.
Head coach Sir John Kirwan says on the Blues’ website the one-off jersey is a fitting way to begin the 2013 campaign on our home ground.
“This jersey signifies many things. A new era for this team; our first home game for the year against our respected foes and a very special jersey to raise funds for a great cause. ”
The 22 playing jerseys, designed in conjunction with Adidas will be auctioned after the match, along with one from Keven Mealamu, the four coaches and a jersey signed by the full squad.
Further limited edition replica jerseys will be sold to raise further funds for You, but only a limited number have been made, the Blues website says.
Mrs Thurston is described on her trust’s website as having many years experience as a successful fundraiser with many of country’s leading charities, including New Zealand Breast Cancer Foundation and a member of Women’s Golf new Zealand as the sponsorship advisor to the board.
“She has organised numerous successful charitable events and has an extensive network of business, political and social contacts throughout New Zealand,” it says.