Sickman Legend Grows

In 2020 when the Magpies arrived at Martinborough for Woodpecker XXIII resplendent in their latest polo team tops to defend the Fraser Moors Memorial trophy that they had won in 2019, many said that the reason for their shock third placing was more down to their outerwear than their play. A new outfit, designed by Magpie stalwart and 2009 Woodpecker champion Mal Sickman was the talk of the town, especially when the teams arrived in Masterton for after-round drinks and nibbles with many of the public thinking that they were in fact the New Zealand Warriors rugby league team.

“I love to understand the fashion context socio-politically, among the teams,” he says. “As a person who loves to make things, I feel more articulate with my hands, but then to have bald-headed Falcons write about how my designs look like a spaghetti junction party for The Wiggles — I’m human and fragile just like my brothers from other mothers and sisters brothers of my uncle’s fathers, my feelings get hurt.”

Fast forward to Rotorua 2022 and the Magpies are back on top with Sickman vindicated by his boldness in going against a brief that stated that the Magpie brand was black only and mixing colours to create a top for the ages.

“The polo has a diverse mix in five colors; Magpie Black, Breakout Blue, Rosebud Red, Gold Tops Mustard and Black White. The white is the most eye-catching with its subtle camo design and while it won’t appeal to everyone it dialed up the style factor and gave it real on-and off-course credentials. The three-way stretch allows unrestricted movement but is a good close fit. One thing to note is that although this is a classic fit where I’m normally a medium I had to go up to a large to allow me to wear a white singlet underneath it.”

To say that I’m delighted with it is an understatement of the most epicest of epic proportions, especially since there is so such a word as epicest.

2021 Champion Stalone loved his shirt so much that he kept it on the entire weekend