Gilbert Rugby

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Gilbert Rugby
IndustrySports equipment
Founded1823 (1823)[1]
FounderWilliam Gilbert
HeadquartersRobertsbridge, UK
Area served
ProductsRugby union and netball equipment and accessories
ParentGrays International

Gilbert Rugby is a sports equipment manufacturing brand, specialising in rugby union and netball. The company is mostly known for its rugby union balls, having been official supplier for every World Cup since 1995.[2]


The company was established by William Gilbert, a cobbler, in 1823, who along with his nephew, James, developed footballs for the neighbouring Rugby School. In 2002, after experiencing financial difficulties following a management buyout, Gilbert was purchased by Grays International.[3]

Gilbert is the long-standing official ball supplier for the England, Wales, Scotland, Australia, South Africa, France, Italy and Argentina rugby unions. They also provide balls for the International Federation of Netball Associations.[4] Gilbert is also the official ball supplier of the ANZ Championship, the biggest netball competition in the world and also the official supplier of the Netball World Championships. Their products include the Gilbert Synergie rugby ball.

In September 2014, Gilbert Rugby launched the "Match-XV" ball,[5] which was developed specifically for the 2015 World Cup held in England. The Match-XV match ball was worn throughout the Premiership Rugby,[6] Top 14[7] and by all Gilbert-sponsored national unions in the test matches in November 2015.


The following table details products manufactured and commercialised by Gilbert for rugby union and netball markets.

Gilbert XT400 rugby union ball
Sport Range of products
Rugby union Balls, kit uniforms (jerseys/shorts/socks), protective gear (body armors, shoulder pads, head guards, scrum caps, mouthguards, gloves), boots, compression garments, bags, safety cones, tees, water bottles, tackle bags
Netball Balls, Uniform equipment, footwear, post, rings


The following teams, associations and players wear uniforms and equipment provided by Gilbert:

Rugby union[edit]




  1. ^ Grays of Cambridge (International) Ltd. "Gilbert Rugby - History - Rugby's Original Brand".
  2. ^ Gilbert será la pelota oficial de la Rugby World Cup, 24 March 2010
  3. ^ "Batmaker gets balls as James Gilbert is rescued". 15 September 2002. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  4. ^ "Gilbert - Official Ball Supplier". International Federation of Netball Associations. 19 July 2006. Archived from the original on 2008-03-14. Retrieved 2009-02-24.
  5. ^ "Innovative Rugby World Cup 2015 Match XV ball launched". East Sussex: Gilbert Rugby. 29 August 2014. Retrieved 2014-08-29.
  7. ^ Sharper Kicks & More Tries as new Gilbert MATCH-XV Balls Arrive by Adam Redmond on, 20 December 2017

External links[edit]