A Radikal departure

New logo for Suncorp Super Netball by WiteKite

Suncorp Super Netball is the new premier Australian netball league commencing in 2017. It will consist of the five current Australian ANZ Championship teams, plus three new teams. The ANZ Championship also comprised five New Zealand teams, but there will now be a separate league for that country.

Logo detail
Logo detail

The logo features a zig-zaggy “N” graphic, and if you tilt your head, you might be convinced that there’s an “S” (for Super) in there too. When I think about netball and how it plays out, I think of the way the ball is passed swiftly between players across the court. (Check out this video if you’re unfamiliar with ball movement in the game.) So I think the graphical cleverly reflects that movement, whether intentionally or not. The stroke in the centre does feel a bit thin, though, when I glance at the logo up close on my screen, but at smaller sizes it’s less distracting.

Logo in vertical lockup
Logo in vertical lockup

The accompanying type consists of the new Suncorp wordmark (which I previously reviewed) and “SUPER NETBALL” in Radikal Black. The sharp vertices of the “N” and “A” in this typeface complement those of the “N” graphic.

Some glaring edits are the notches in various letters in “SUPER NETBALL”. They are completely unnecessary and are barely visible – nay impossible to discern – at small sizes. Radikal doesn’t need to be any more radical.

Clearly the lockups were designed specifically to accommodate “Suncorp”, with the words sized to make for nice alignment with the graphic. But the two different styles of sans-serif (with different letter-spacing) in such close proximity just don’t integrate well. Add to that the unusual colour combination and I really wish “SUNCORP” was out of the picture altogether.

On the Super Netball website, the logo changes colour to match each team
On the Super Netball website, the logo changes colour to match each team

Speaking of colours, the logo changes colour on the website to match the various team colours on their respective pages (the Suncorp wordmark remains as is). I don’t know how extensive this coordination is, but it’s a nice touch. (Update: the new logos for the A-League football competition have been treated like this too, but more comprehensively.) Incidentally, the default hot pink seems to match the colours of the league’s broadcast partners’ logos, 9Gem and Telstra TV. Again, not sure if this is intentional but it is suspicious.

Logo on a player's jersey
Logo on a player’s jersey

Overall, it seems Netball Australia is trying to make netball cool again(?) with a logo that is quite a departure from that of its antecedent competition. The “N” graphic is edgy (literally) and a solid shorthand for the brand which would look great on merchandise. Unfortunately, the logo is marred by unnecessary tweaks and the necessary addition of the sponsor name, which appears like an overbearing parent who has to be involved in everything, to the rest of the logo’s chagrin.

An otherwise fun piece.

Related Links:

Super Netball website