The Clydesdale Bank 40, England’s domestic limited overs tournament, is more than well under way. Most teams involved have already played at least three matches, and some squads have already played as many as five.
Of the three major domestic tournaments in England, the CB-40 is definitely a distant third in popularity behind the County Championship and the Friends Life Twenty20. (I have no idea if that is true or not, but it seems right.)
However, like all one day cricket, the CB40 allows counties to use colored kits, and therefore they can make a little money selling shirts than aren’t all white. And while I prefer my cricketers in white, I still like to look through what the counties have to offer each season.
And so without further ado, here’s the first annual Limited Overs Fashion Awards, CB40 Division. (The FLT20 Division will follow later in the year).
First off: let’s take a look at all of the kits from the 18 participating squads this season:
Like in previous years, the Netherlands have been invited to play in this season’s CB40. I had a hard time finding a good picture of their current one-day kit, but it usually looks just like the above. High points for the instantly recognizable shade of orange, but it gets dinged for its lack of originality.
A classic blue and a not too intrusive sponsor – I hate it when teams have really lame sponsors, like this. I also like the fact that the color is a different shade of blue than the rest of the shirt. And I prefer proper buttons.
I like this kit. Good green against black, though I don’t like what appear to be giant horns. Also, nice touch with oval sponsor logo.
Great looking shirt, though I don’t care for the v-neck/collar combination. Classy and understated sponsor.
Awful, just awful. The less said about this shirt, the better.
Essex was absolutely HAMMERED by the Dutch today, and I am quite sure it has at least something to do with how utterly awful their kit is. Who could concentrate on batting when wearing that?
However, I must say, I enjoy the collar. Proper buttons, no v-neck.
I had a hard time finding Leicestershire’s online store. And I think it must because they know that no one in their right mind would ever want to buy their shirts. Nice wolf, nerds.
Meh. This kit is neither good nor bad. It just kind of sits there, trying not to be noticed.
Another simply god-awful shirt. I hate the crew-neck/collar combination – and KIA is such a gaudy sponsor. Surrey is a classy London club, they should do better.
It took me FOREVER to track this down, and I am still not sure if it is the right one or not. It’s really awful looking, whosever kit it is. You are hosting a test match this year, Durham, get your act together.
Again, I am not sure this is right not. Nice looking kit, though.
Another one that was difficult to find. The shirt is far too loud for my tastes. Nice sponsor thought: PARAMOUNT!
I assumed this shirt would be red, to match Nottingham Forest, but instead it is an ugly green and yellow combo and the collar is just too much. Also, that elk on their logo needs to go. What’s in your wallet?
I honestly could not find a reliable image of Somerset’s 2012 CB40 shirt. Seriously. They automatically finish dead last.
Yes, this was the best image on Sussex’s official website. While their t20 shirt is actually quite nice looking, this is is rather ugly, mostly thanks to the sponsor’s logo.
This their T20 shirt, but the only CB40 merch they had on their site was a baseball cap. I posted this picture anyway, not sure why.
Not a bad looking shirt, overall. Though I could do without the yellow striping. I like that they took the picture right in the store, probably with the Marketing Assistant’s iPhone.
Another no-show, another last place finish.
This is last year’s shirt, their site only had the County Championship and FLT20 shirts. I decided to post it anyway, because it is one more example of how a terrible sponsorship logo can ruin an otherwise okay shirt. And I like Old Speckled Hen.
Ugh. Who designs these things? (I am talking about the shirt).
And another one I could not find. Though I am sure it is another maroon monstrosity, just like last year.
And that’s it. What a collection of terrible, terrible shirts. And what a collection of god-awful websites.
The winner of the 2012 CB40 Fashion Show? Gloucestershire, with Lancashire a close second. Honorable mention goes to the Netherlands.
The losers? Us fans, and me for having to wade my way through those seriously nightmarish websites.
I understand that these clubs operate on shoestring budgets, but web design is one thing they should be spending money on, as far as I am concerned.
In American sports, all the teams in the big leagues have cookie-cutter websites: they all the look the same. The Minnesota Twins’ looks just like the Cincinnati Reds’, for instance. And while I normally would smile on the ECB for allowing their teams to develop their own unique brands, sometimes you have to err on the side of convenience and just make all the sites look the same. You would probably sell more shirts, at the very least.
Also, geez, for crying out loud, is it that difficult to design a decent looking one-day shirt?
The answer is a resounding YES, from what I can tell.
I am excited about the FLT20 division, however. Look for that in June.