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Female hockey players’ names are often covered by their hair. New International Women’s Day jerseys aim to fix it

The special jerseys will be worn during the March 8 Toronto vs. Montreal game.
/ Source: TODAY

The Professional Women’s Hockey League and a Canadian-based brewery are partnering to increase visibility in women’s hockey.

On March 5, the PWHL and Molson announced a multi-year partnership with the release of their “See My Name” campaign, which aims to bring exposure to women on the ice. The International Women’s Day initiative features an advertisement showcasing the new jerseys sponsored by Molson.

The revamped attire switches up the jersey format, putting the brand's name in the spot traditionally reserved for players’ names. Their names are instead placed below the jersey number.

The move increases the identifiability of each player, as their names can be obstructed by long hair.

In a 30-second spot featuring players Natalie Spooner, Blayre Turnbull, Ann-Renee Desbiens, Leah Lum and Catherine Dubois, their last names are obscured by their ponytails, leaving them indecipherable.

Then, it showcases the revamped jersey, featuring a Molson logo at the top while each player's last name is visible.

"Molson is covering our name so hers can be seen," the ad's on-screen text reads.

The special jerseys will only be worn during the March 8 Toronto vs. Montréal matchup.

"Though currently a pilot project, these updated jerseys are just a first step of many in Molson’s mission to help elevate female hockey players," the league said in a press release.

In the comments section of the commercial posted to YouTube, users expressed how much the initiative had moved them.

"CHILLS," a commenter wrote.

"Where can i buy these jerseys??" another user added. "This is history!"

Lack of visibility has played a large factor in the sustainability of top-level women’s hockey leagues. The PWHL kicked off its first season earlier this year, after the Premier Hockey Federation, formerly known as the National Women's Hockey League, was dissolved in 2023.

The PWHL's inaugural season comes nearly four years after the Canadian Women’s Hockey League was abruptly shut down. The league was founded in 2007 and starting from the 2017-18 season, players’ salaries ranged from $2,000 to $10,000, out of a total budget of $3.7 million.