‘Fiery conditions’: Nike changes Australian Open outfit ad after bushfire backlash
Sportswear giant Nike was forced to change its newly-released Australian Open outfit ad after receiving a widespread backlash over a promise to help players battle “fiery conditions” on the court.
Nike’s new knee-length bodysuit is aimed at helping female athletes combat Australia’s enervating heat, however, the wording used in the ad sparked outrage on social media.
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“Melbourne also tracks the hottest temperatures of any of tennis’ four majors,” said the ad, which featured images of Canadian star Bianca Andreescu.
“Averaging more than 100 degrees (37 degrees Celsius), the heat challenges players and, in turn, NikeCourt’s apparel designers to outduel the fiery conditions.”
Juuuust a bit tone deaf here, Nike. pic.twitter.com/2wHl52PbP9— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) January 3, 2020
The advertisement was deemed inappropriate by many given that devastating wildfires have engulfed Australia, killing at least 24 people and more than 500 million animals.
Having received widespread criticism for the clumsy wording, Nike promoters changed the description to its newly-designed collection, replacing “fiery conditions” with a neutral phrase to “keep players cool.”Also on rt.com ‘Conditions are a health concern for players’: Novak Djokovic worried about bushfires ahead of Australian Open
The NikeCourt Melbourne collection is expected to be released on January 13, one week before the Australian Open starts.
Due to unprecedented bushfires which have ravaged the continent the season-opening Grand Slam might be delayed for the sake of players’ health.