Be it ridiculous style of fashion or setting a style quotient, the Indian cricketers have sported them with honour © Getty Images
Be it ridiculous style of fashion or setting a style quotient, the Indian cricketers have sported them with honour © Getty Images

On May 4, the BCCI CEO Rahul Johri launched the new Team India jersey that had the logo of the new sponsor Oppo. The Indian players will be donning this jersey from the upcoming ICC Champions Trophy to be held in England and Wales beginning on June 1. To think about it, the familiar blue jersey has come a long way. The team shed its whites in the 1970s and since, has modified or changed over the years. Be it ridiculous style of fashion or setting a style quotient, the players have sported them with honour.

Let us have a look at how the Indian team jersey has evolved over the last five years:

From 1970 to early 1980s:

Yes, even the ODIs were played in  whites then... © Getty Images
Yes, even the ODIs were played in whites then… © Getty Images

Test cricket is played in whites and in the pre day-night era, whites was the colour for ODIs too. In fact, the first four World Cups were played in whites. Most of the countries began their experimentation with colours during the Kerry Packer’s World Series Cricket in 1978. WSC West Indies XI took on WSC Australia XI for the first day-night match. Where West Indies XI wore coral pink, Australia XI wore shiny gold jerseys. That saw an increase in innovation of jerseys.

The mid 1980s:

India not only won the championship but also sported one of the simplest Indian jerseys © Getty Images
India not only won the championship but also sported one of the simplest Indian jerseys © Getty Images

India not only won the Benson & Hedges World Championship in 1985 at Australia but they did so sporting coloured jerseys. Leaving the classic whites away, India’s first coloured jersey comprised of suave blue and pale yellow strip. No sponsors and no name of the country, just plain colours. This was probably one of the simplest jerseys that Indian players wore.

In 1991-92:

India played a tri-series in Australia before the World Cup 1992. They sported a light blue with a yellow stripe with the team name in the centre. The stylish bit was the typeface used for the country name. It had a cursive touch. You can watch the video where Sachin Tendulkar smashed 77 vs West Indies, albeit for a losing cause.

In 1992:

All team captains were seen sporting their coloured jersey specifically for the World Cup © Getty Images
All team captains were seen sporting their coloured jersey specifically for the World Cup in Australia © Getty Images

When India played World Cup 1992, they had a tryst with dark blue Down Under. The dark blue was coupled with stripes. The Benson and Hedges logo was also obvious on the jersey as it was the tournament sponsor. Although the colours did not prove to be lucky charm for India, as they won just two games in the tournament.

In 1993:

The blue became lighter and this time the jersey had India written in the centre with Hero as the sponsor. The pale yellow continued with dash of black as well on both sleeves. This jersey was particularly for the Hero Cup that India won against five nations at Eden Gardens in Kolkata. Relive the moment with this video.

In 1994:

The Singer World Series was a quadrangular tournament and was memorable for Tendulkar securing his maiden ODI century, playing as an opener for the first time. The video takes us back to that memorable day. As for the jersey, the bright yellow was more prominent and blue stripes with India written in the same colour. Wills was the sponsor of the jersey this time. As for the series, India triumphed by defeating Sri Lanka in the final by 6 wickets.

In 1996:

India were humbled by Sri Lanka in the semi-final but the jersey had various other colours as well © Getty Images
India were humbled by Sri Lanka in the semi-final but the jersey had various other colours as well © Getty Images

Then came the World Cup. India had a new jersey designed particularly for this tournament. Unlike the dark blue colour that India encountered during 1992 World Cup, this was much lighter with pale yellow stripes again. Seems like light blue and yellow were the popular shades for Team India in early years. The only addition was the rainbow arrows that were right above the yellow stripes. As for the sponsors, Wills was standing out on the jersey once again. In terms of the tournament, India were humbled by Sri Lanka in the semi-final. Wills was not only India’s sponsors but also they sponsored the tournament.

In 1998:

This was the first time when tri-colours knocked the door of Indian jersey © Getty Images
This was the first time when tri-colours knocked the door of Indian jersey © Getty Images

Moving on from the yellow stripes, India finally showcased their tri-colours on the jersey. The light blue was the centre of attraction while the yellow stripes were replaced by Indian tri-colours. This was probably pleasing to the eye and one of the best jerseys India wore. This jersey became even more significant when Tendulkar struck twin centuries in consecutive matches against Australia in the Coca Cola Cup in Sharjah. India went on to win the tournament.

In late 1998:

The experimentation continued the same year, when India went away with the yellow and was entirely blue with the team name written in lighter blue tone. In those days, jerseys for all the sides in a particular tournament were similar themed. This was when Sourav Ganguly had scored 26 vs Pakistan in the second match of Coca Cola Cup 1998-99.

In 1999:

The jersey had bright yellow all upon their jersey but their campaign was not that bright enough in the tournament © Getty Images
The jersey had bright yellow all upon their jersey but their campaign was not that bright enough in the tournament © Getty Images

With World Cup came a new jersey for India. The yellow came back and was stretched across the body and sleeves, ending at the cuffs. It surely looked like bunch of birds are flocking together. Just as their light blue jersey, India’s campaign was dull.

In 1999 and early 2000:

India won just one game but this time they also had numbers imprinted on the jersey along with their names © Getty Images
India won just one game but this time they also had numbers imprinted on the jersey along with their names © Getty Images

The colours were evenly poised when India played the Carlton and United Series. There was tinge of light and dark blue. But BCCI logo was large enough at the centre. Also numbers were imprinted below the player’s name. As their mixed up jersey, India had just one win in the series.

In 2000:

The Indian team would never have dreamt of donning a jersey that had zebra lines but with different colours. The yellow and black stripes through the jersey with blue being constant had a meaning to it. The definition behind their new jersey was India scaling to new heights in limited-overs cricket. This was the last jersey with Wills sponsoring it. The video takes you through the match where India won against Australia in the quarter-final by 20 runs. They also won the semi-final against South Africa but lost the final against New Zealand.

Early 2001:

Sahara was the new sponsor after Wills sponsored the India jersey for a long time © Getty Images
Sahara was the new sponsor after Wills sponsored the India jersey for a long time © Getty Images

Although Sahara had taken the reins as the new sponsor, the yellow and blue colours continued. This time Sahara was written in bold in the centre as well as the sleeves. Meanwhile, the BCCI logo found its way in the top left side corner.

In 2002:

This was one of the best jersey's that India has sported and also famously knock for Sourav Ganguly's antics © Getty Images
This was one of the best jersey’s that India has sported and also famously knock for Sourav Ganguly’s antics © Getty Images

One of the best jerseys was seen during the 2002 NatWest series, also remembered for Ganguly waving his jersey from the Lord’s balcony during the final. It had splash of tri-colours from the bottom to centre upon rich blue colour. This was one of the memorable series where India’s then record chase of 326 is still fresh in the minds of many.

In 2003:

The black stripes on the sleeves made the jersey look odd © Getty Images
The black stripes on the sleeves made a good looking jersey look odd © Getty Images

With the jersey that had dash of tri-colours upon the rich blue colour, black stripes were added on the sleeves, welcoming the national side to the World Cup. Perhaps the stripes were the flavour of the World Cup that was held in Africa. Although the black stripes made the jersey look odd, their campaign was no ordinary one and Indian ended up as runners-up.

In 2007-08:

India had a disappointing outing in the 2007 World Cup but went for a pale blue jersey © Getty Images
India not only had a dull campaign but also sported a pale blue jersey © Getty Images

India might have had the most disappointing outing in 2007 World Cup; however, their jersey was decent and not too fancy. Upon a light blue there was stripe of tri-colours with all colours mixed together. Nike’s logo also found its spot.

In 2009:

With Champions Trophy, India opted for darker shade of blue since 1992 World Cup © Getty Images
With Champions Trophy, India opted for darker shade of blue since 1992 World Cup © Getty Images

With Champions Trophy, India opted for darker shade of blue since 1992 World Cup. The saffron colour spread to the inside of the collar with additional ICC Champions Trophy logo imprinted on the jersey as well. Although they looked good, India’s performance was not strong enough.

In 2011:

India not only lifted the World Cup after 28 years but also saw different and soothing shade of blue © Getty Images
India not only lifted the World Cup after 28 years but also saw different and soothing shade of blue © Getty Images

Another World Cup and this jersey was totally different than all their other jerseys. India not only lifted the World Cup after 28 years but also saw different and soothing shade of blue. Sahara was only present on the sleeves and nowhere on the centre. Ever since, they stopped playing around with different shades of blue and stuck to one colour.

In 2014:

Star made its entry on the jersey, bidding adieu to Sahara © Getty Images
Star made its entry on the jersey, bidding adieu to Sahara © Getty Images

It was time to bid adieu to Sahara and Star made its entry right at the centre in white. The tri-colours were shifted to the sleeves in a triangular shape. The pleasing blue remained constant.

In 2015:

India may have been eliminated in the semi-final but stood out for their rich jersey © Getty Images
India may have been eliminated in the semi-final but stood out for their rich jersey © Getty Images

With another World Cup came another new jersey. This time India were eliminated in the semi-final. Interestingly, the jersey as well as the kit was made out of an average of 33 recycled plastic bottles. The jersey was of plain blue and had no sign of tri-colour. Star was written in white on the right sleeve and Nike logo on the left. India was written in bold saffron colour at the centre. The pocket lining of the tracks had tinge of saffron as well.

In 2016:

India once again were eliminated in the semi-final but the jersey had saffron in  a triangular shape on specially for the T20 World Cup © Getty Images
India once again were eliminated in the semi-final but the jersey had saffron in a triangular shape on specially for the T20 World Cup © Getty Images

With the T20 World Cup, India men and women revamped their jersey as well. This was a sign of changing times with triangular shaded saffron colour at the top and the blue was just the same.

In 2017: 

Apart from the recent new sponsor of Oppo, India had changed their jersey once again early on and it was all blue. The sleeves were darker while the navy blue remained constant. However, this time the jersey had some technical aspects as well to it. It comprised of 4D Quickness and Zero Distraction for better stretch, temperature and maximising performance.