Fixtures - Top Bar

Gilbert launch Match-XV Plus with Aviva Premiership Rugby

Innovation and evolution are at the heart of the Match-XV Plus, the official plus size match ball of Aviva Premiership Rugby launched by Gilbert Rugby today.

Following an extensive development process Gilbert have consulted with many top clubs, players and broadcasters to find the perfect balance in ball dimensions and size to offer the best experience to players, supporters and officials without compromising any of the famous technical genius accustomed to a Gilbert Rugby ball.

With improved handling, superior visibility and an optimised sweet-spot, the Match-XV Plus will launch in Aviva Premiership Rugby later this month at the big Saracens v Harlequins derby day clash at Wembley. A successful debut could lead to it being used in the tournament showpiece – the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final on 28 May – the pinnacle of English club rugby and a date for any rugby fans’ diary!

Billy Vunipola: "The Wembley game is always one we look forward to at Saracens so it will be exciting to be back there playing Harlequins on 16 April.

"The boys love playing there but sometimes it’s tricky to pick the ball out from the background with the size of the crowd at such a big ground.

"It will be interesting to see how the new Gilbert Match-XV Plus shapes up. We’ve been practising with it and it’s great to handle as well as being easier to see. The grip’s exactly the same as the normal size ball and the kickers seem to be loving it.

"We can’t wait to run out at Wembley, throw the ball around and have some fun."

Paul Morgan, Communications Director at Premiership Rugby said: "With the increase in television coverage, attendances on the rise and the amount of big games taking place at big stadiums like Wembley, it’s essential that the ball has maximum visibility at all times from a fans’, players’ and officials’ point of view. With the new Gilbert Match-XV Plus, we get just that.

"We were pleased to pilot the original Match-XV developed for the Rugby World Cup in Aviva Premiership Rugby last season and will be at the cutting edge again with this latest development from Gilbert.

"If the larger Gilbert Match-XV Plus is a success for Saracens v Harlequins at Wembley, we are hoping that it will be used at the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final at Twickenham on 28 May."
 
Andrew Challis, Global Gilbert Brand Manager added: "At Gilbert, we pride ourselves on providing the best innovative products & support to all levels of the game.

"It is our relentless research and development that enables us to maintain our No.1 status in world rugby. After successfully providing balls for the biggest Rugby World Cup ever, Gilbert’s engineers have been working around the clock to push the boundaries of ball development. Our best, just got better!"

Tickets for Saracens v Harlequins at Wembley at 3.15pm on Saturday, 16 April are on sale at saracens.com/wembleytickets

We released this story at 9am on Friday 1 April…. but at noon revealed it was an April Fool.

 

Latest News

Harlequins Ladies coach savours upcoming Women’s Super Rugby season

Women’s sport is booming according to former Richmond prop and Scotland captain Karen Findlay, who is now relishing the prospect…

Aviva Tackling Numbers programme celebrated at Corporate Engagement Awards

Premiership Rugby and its Aviva Tackling Numbers programme enjoyed not one but two moments in the spotlight at the Corporate…

Corporate Engagement Awards

Lions ready for battle on eve of All Blacks Test

After months of waiting and weeks of build-up, The British & Irish Lions are ready to face the toughest challenge…

Saracens and London Irish to kick off the season at Twickenham

SARACENS and London Irish will help launch the 2017-18 Premiership Rugby season after being chosen as the home sides for…

Ex-England star Susie Appleby excited to lead Gloucester-Hartpury in inaugural Women’s Super Rugby campaign

Former England international Susie Appleby believes it’s an exciting time for women’s rugby as she issues a rallying cry to…

Wasps confirm 2017/18 pre-season schedule

Wasps have today confirmed their 2017/18 pre-season schedule, which will see them face Connacht Rugby and Ulster Rugby, as well…

Wasps celebrate

Quartet sign Academy contracts with Bath Rugby

Bath Rugby is delighted to confirm that Rhys Davies, Wil Partington, Miles Reid, and Kieran Verden have all signed long-term…

Todd Blackadder

Clare Daniels hoping to inspire the next generation of female rugby referees

The first female official in Aviva Premiership Rugby history, Clare Daniels, has urged girls and women to take up officiating…

Luke McLean enthused by London Irish move

Luke McLean is looking to reignite his international career under Italy Head Coach Conor O’Shea following his summer move to…

All Black Francis Saili joins Harlequins

Harlequins is excited to confirm today (Wednesday 21st June) that All Black Francis Saili has joined the Club. Commenting on…

Francis Saili

Bath Rugby sign Phillips from Bristol Rugby

Bath Rugby is pleased to announce the signing of James Phillips, who has joined the Club from Bristol Rugby until…

JamesPhillips1

Nowell gets two tries as Lions see off Chiefs in Hamilton

Exeter Chiefs’ Jack Nowell returned to his sparkling best with two tries for the British & Irish Lions in their…

Nalaga a big coup for Irish says international teammate Tikoirotuma

Explosive wing Napolioni Nalaga can be an big hit in every sense of the word during next season's Aviva Premiership…

Masi and Everard return to Wasps alongside new Academy Manager Jonathan Pendlebury

Wasps are pleased to announce a new Academy structure ahead of the 2017/18 season. The new set-up sees former Yorkshire…

The new Wasps academy coaches

Sale Sharks announce signing of Australia international James O’Connor

Sale Sharks have announced the latest in a wave of world class signings, as they confirm Australian International James O’Connor…

Sale Sharks announce signing of Australia international James O’Connor

Lions prepared for final warm-up before All Blacks Test

After a crucial victory against the Maori All Blacks, the British & Irish Lions are just a single match away…

Wasps sign Paul Doran-Jones and David Langley

Wasps today confirm the signing of props Paul Doran-Jones and David Langley, while loosehead Tom Bristow is confirmed as leaving…

Paul Doran-Jones

Venter integral to Du Plessis opting to join London Irish

Petrus Du Plessis says Brendan Venter was a key factor in his decision to move to London Irish this summer.…

Fight and spirit shone through despite defeat, says England U20 coach Vass

Head coach Ian Vass hailed his England U20 side’s fight and spirit after they were beaten in the World Rugby…