Lacoste has appointed Novak Djokovic its new brand ambassador with the tennis star set to wear the high-end label’s product both on and off the court following the expiry of his five-year deal with Uniqlo.
The company has also developed an eponymous line for Djokovic to wear on-court during Grand Slam tournaments as well as during other tournaments throughout the season.
The Novak Djokovic collection is a line of performance products and is available in Lacoste stores from this month with the player debuting in the new line during the 2017 French Open in Paris this week.
The company said the collection was “engineered” from materials selected for their quality and performance with a focus on comfort with ergonomic stitching to prevent chaffing, and cutting to boost ease of movement.
Djokovic’s signature is printed on the left sleeve of the polo shirt, which features graphics inspired by the lines of a tennis court.
Given Lacoste’s history – with founder René Lacoste first shooting to fame as a tennis champion and then moving into the product arena – it’s no surprise that the marketing campaign for the new line give shim almost equal billing alongside Djokovic.
A film, directed by Julien Pujol, mixes black and white footage of Lacoste in the 1930s and of Djokovic now and looks back to the invention of the classic L.12.12 Polo shirt. This development saw Lacoste leave traditional tennis-wear behind by cutting off the sleeves of his shirt, in order to allow himself greater freedom of movement. That was, in many ways, the male equivalent of what Suzanne Lenglen had done in the 1920s as she popularised much less restrictive tennis clothing for women that also influenced everyday clothing.
Meanwhile the print campaign, which was shot by photographer Jacob Sutton comes with visuals combining both black and white and colour shots with most images being of Djokovic, but one combining him with René Lacoste.
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