Welsh Rugby Union Sign Ball Sponsorship Deal with Gilbert

By Community | September 28, 2012

The Welsh Rugby Union has secured a six-year sponsorship deal with rugby ball manufacturer Gilbert.

The deal, pills the value of which is not being disclosed, ed will see the Gilbert name appearing on balls used in Welsh home rugby internationals.

It will also provide balls to all of the WRU’s teams and 294 domestic league clubs, with a specific design scheme to reflect the needs of each competition and group of players.

Gilbert take over from Webb Ellis, which has held the contract for six years.

All WRU member clubs will receive an allocation of balls each season – with the number of balls they receive depending on the number of sides they run.

Gilbert had previously held the contract with the WRU before the six-year Webb Ellis deal.

Sales and marketing director at Gilbert Richard Gray said: “Everybody at Gilbert is delighted to be starting a new relationship with the WRU and to be working at every level to grow the sport in Wales. We are especially proud that the Gilbert ball has been chosen by Wales following on from their fantastic season and exciting Rugby World Cup campaign.

“This major new deal with Gilbert will be for the good of Welsh rugby from grass roots to senior level for the next six years.”

“We hope that this new colour-coded system will prove to be aspirational for young players.”

Previously clubs have simply been sent an allocation of, on average 20 balls for the season but a new system of distribution will see clubs that run more teams being rewarded with the right size and standard of balls for their teams.

The WRU’s head of sales and marketing Craig Maxwell said: “This new association with Gilbert is a significant announcement for the WRU and is our most comprehensive ball deal to date.

“Every club will be provided for each year as well as all our national teams and development staff for the benefit of schools and junior teams.

“Not only do we get the top-class quality associated with Gilbert balls, but we are thrilled with the detail we have been able to include in the contract to support our policy which rewards clubs who are making efforts to develop our game through club and player development.”