Puma’s decision to downgrade its involvement in Northern Hemisphere rugby as part of the companies biggest restructuring ever has seen a raft of players agreeing to new sponsorship deals with various manufacturers, including Irish captain Jamie Heaslip.
Heaslip had been one of the pin-up boys for Puma’s rugby range, sporting a pair of the evoSpeed boots and featuring heavily in their marketing. But on the weekend, as his side were downed by a rejuvenated Scottish team, Heaslip was wearing a pair of Nike’s latest Mercurial Vapors.
The Vapor IX is the latest offering in Nike’s incredibly popular and iconic range of boots, and the silver pair which Heaslip wore on the weekend were the third colourway released to date. While the first two, dubbed ‘Wildberry’ and ‘Sunset’ were more flamboyant, Heaslip’s silver pair are slightly more understated, yet still highly advanced.
A key difference between the Platinum/Black/Electric Green boots which the Irish loose forward wore from the first two colourways released is the fact that these are made from leather, as opposed to synthetic.
Whilst a favourite with the flashy players in the backs, the Mercurial Vapor IX is still suited to loose-forward play, with it’s light weight adding speed and agility round the field, and its robust construction ensuring it can withstand the rigourous demands of International forward play.