Ranji Wilson

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Ranji Wilson
Ranji Wilson.jpg
Date of birth 18 May 1886
Place of birth Christchurch
Date of death 11 August 1953(1953-08-11) (aged 67)
Place of death Lower Hutt
Rugby union career
Position(s) Loose Forward
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
1908-1914  New Zealand 21 (18)

Nathaniel Arthur "Ranji" Wilson[1] (18 May 1886 – 11 August 1953) was an early All Black, rugby football player for New Zealand. He was born in Christchurch of English/West Indian parentage, his father being West Indian.

Wilson was chosen for the All Blacks for matches against the touring Anglo-Welsh in 1908, versus Australia in 1910, 1913 and again in 1914.

In an unusual case, he was charged with assault in 1910 for actions during match, but was found not guilty.[2][3]

During the First World War, he was one of the stars of the New Zealand Services team which won the Kings Cup against other Dominion countries in 1918-19, and would have toured South Africa with the New Zealand Army team in 1919 had he not been classed as "coloured".[4]

Wilson was later one of the team of seven selectors who picked the 1924-5 "Invincibles" team that toured Great Britain, France and Canada undefeated.

He died on 11 August 1953 in Lower Hutt.


  1. ^ Several sources give his nickname as "Rangi"
  2. ^ [1] The Argus, Melbourne, 24 November 1910
  3. ^ "'Rangi' Wilson Acquitted" Hawera & Normanby Star, Volume LX, 25 November 1910, Page 3
  4. ^ "Race and South African rugby", FJG Van Der Merwe, 2010