1909 New Zealand Māori rugby league tour of Australia

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The 1909 New Zealand Māori rugby league tour of Australia was a tour made by a group of New Zealand Māori rugby footballers who played rugby league matches in Queensland and New South Wales. The tour followed on from another Māori tour of Australia the previous year and a tour by the New Zealand national side a month earlier. The Māori side played the Australian national side four times, winning one of the "test" matches.

The tour[edit]

Following the first "test", won by the Māori 16-14, about 5,000 of the 30,000 crowd invaded the pitch, upset with the standard of refereeing. Only about a dozen police were present and it took them almost an hour to assist the referee from the ground.[1]

Before the fourth "test" nine players from the tour were detained, after Robert Jack claimed he was owed money relating to the 1908 tour, the NSWRL paid Jack his claimed debt, rather than risk the match being called off.[1]

The team were awarded the O T Punch Cup for their victories over Sydney teams, the cup had been damaged when the crowd invaded the pitch in the first "test".

Aftermath[edit]

The 1909 side was the first to wear a kiwi emblem on their uniforms, the New Zealand national side is now called the Kiwis.[1]

Squad[edit]

Only 19 players were involved in the squad, with a maximum of 18 available for selection at any one time. Seventeen travelled with the main party, however Nirai Chareure broke his collarbone after the first match. Tohe Herangi joined the touring party after the first match and Hone Tuki arrived in time for the first 'test' match.[1]

Mākereti (Maggie) and Murai (Bella) Papakura and two Māori chiefs travelled with the side.[1] NSW selector Dennis Lutge was assigned to the team as an advisor.

Maori name English name Position Bio
Nirai Chareure Ned McRae Captain, broke his collarbone in the first match
Ariki Haira Alex Stanaway forward From Auckland and originally from Northern Wairoa, later represented New Zealand, toured in 1908
Tohe Herangi T Searanche
Pou Kopana Paul Coban
Rewi Maniapoto Sid Ellis
Witana Mare Murray
Hauauru Pakere Frank Barclay utility back From Tauranga, later represented New Zealand, toured in 1908
Punga Pakere Glen Barclay forward From Tauranga, brother of Frank, later played for the North Sydney Bears, toured in 1908
Te Keepa Pouwiuwhiu Ernie Asher three-quarters From Tauranga, brother of Albert, later represented New Zealand, toured in 1908
Te Rira Pukere
Riki Papakura utility back From Manonui, later played for Australasia and Warrington, toured in 1908
Nikorima Ratete Nikki Rogers inside back From Rotorua, also toured in 1908
Tutu Roera Tutu Royal
Puhipi Rukutai Jim Rukutai forward Later represented and coached New Zealand
Hone Taonui John Hetet
Hone Tuki three-quarters from Northland, toured in 1908
Arapeta Paurini Wharepapa Albert Asher three-quarters Former All Black who would later represent New Zealand and Australasia, toured in 1908
Tāmati Wikiriwhi Tāmati Wilkinson
Te Kanawa Wi Neera

Match results[edit]

Before the side left New Zealand they lost 14-21 to Auckland on 10 July 1909 at Victoria Park in front of 2-3,000 spectators.[2]

Date Opponent Venue Result Score Attendance Report
24 July New South Wales Royal Agricultural Society Showground, Sydney Win 24-21 28,000 [3]
28 July New South Wales Royal Agricultural Society Showground, Sydney Win 14-11 6,000 [3]
31 July Australia Royal Agricultural Society Showground, Sydney Win 16-14 30,000 [3]
4 August Newcastle Newcastle Showgrounds, Newcastle Loss 6-7 2,000 [3]
7 August Queensland Brisbane Cricket Ground, Brisbane Loss 11-21 7,000 [3]
11 August Queensland Brisbane Cricket Ground, Brisbane Win 36-25 6,000 [3]
14 August Australia Brisbane Cricket Ground, Brisbane Loss 13-16 8,000 [3]
21 August Australia Royal Agricultural Society Showground, Sydney Loss 16-23 11,000 [3]
25 August New South Wales Wentworth Park, Sydney Win 12-8 3,000 [3]
28 August Australia Royal Agricultural Society Showground, Sydney Loss 13-20 7,500 [3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Coffey, John; Bernie, Wood (2008). 100 years: Māori rugby league, 1908-2008. Huia Publishers. p. 64. ISBN 978-1-86969-331-2. 
  2. ^ John Coffey; Bernie Wood (18 September 2009). Auckland, 100 Years of Rugby League, 1909-2009. ISBN 978-1-86969-366-4. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Maori tour 1909 rugbyleagueproject.org