Adidas reveals Rugby World Cup poster ads

The sports brand Adidas has enlisted some of rugby's greatest players to launch a global campaign celebrating the upcoming Rugby World Cup.

The poster, print and TV campaign by the Amsterdam-based agency 180 and TBWA\ Worldwide breaks this week and will run throughout the six-week competition, which kicks-off in Australia on 10 October.

The poster and print executions, which will be the focus for the UK launch, feature paint-splattered portraits of individual players in motion.

The England stars Jonny Wilkinson and Martin Johnson, along with the All Blacks Jonah Lomu and Ritchie McCaw, are among the players to feature on the 15 posters.

Each execution carries a headline that offers an insight into the individual's performance and style of play.

For example, the Wilkinson poster states: "There's only one way to match him. Cloning."

Another featuring Lomu reads: "He's the speed, you're the bump."

A third reads: "Fear of heights: acrophobia. Fear of water: hydrophobia. Fear of nothing: Anton Oliver."

The art director was Stuart Brown. The copy writers were Peter McHugh, Giles Montgomery and Brad Roseberry, all at 180. Media planning and buying was through PHD.

The outdoor work will be focused on the London Underground where 100 48-sheet posters will be positioned.

A Piccadilly Circus station platform will be completely taken over this week, and a giant banner of Wilkinson and Johnson will be unveiled on Great Eastern Street.

In addition, a range of postcards will be distributed at pubs and bars across London, Bristol and Bath.

A print version of the campaign will also appear in the monthly edition of Rugby World magazine.

The campaign will run throughout England, Ireland, France, Japan, New Zealand and Australia.

The original "self-portrait" impressions have been turned into an exhibition, which launches in Dublin's Guinness Store House this week and will travel throughout New Zealand during the World Cup.

A digital version of the campaign can be viewed at adidas. com/rugby.

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