Joseph Warbrick was a Māori rugby union player who represented New Zealand on their 1884 tour to Australia. He later captained the 1888–89 New Zealand Native football team that embarked on a 107-match tour of New Zealand, Australia, and the British Isles. In 1903, he was killed along with several others by an eruption of the Waimangu Geyser. In 2008, he and the Natives were inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame.
About Joe Warbrick in brief
Joseph Warbrick was a Māori rugby union player who represented New Zealand on their 1884 tour to Australia. He later captained the 1888–89 New Zealand Native football team that embarked on a 107-match tour of New Zealand, Australia, and the British Isles. The tour, the first from the Southern Hemisphere to visit Britain, remains the longest in rugby’s history. In 1903, he was killed along with several others by an eruption of the Waimangu Geyser. In 2008, he and the Natives were inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame. He played club rugby for Auckland side Ponsonby while boarding at St Stephen’s Native School. In 1877, he became the youngest person to play first-class rugby in New Zealand – a record he still holds as of 2017. The Australian New South Wales colonial team became the first overseas rugby side to tour New Zealand in 1882 and played seven matches throughout the country. He was also selected for the first New Zealand representative team, and played in seven of the side’s eight matches on their tour of New South Wales in 1884. He retired from rugby after returning from the tour, with the exception of an appearance for Auckland in 1894, and went on to work as a farmer and tourist guide in the Bay of Plenty. His brothers Alfred, Arthur, Fred, and Billy also toured with him as part of the 1888-89 team. The squad, which included several New Zealand-born and foreign-born Europeans, was originally envisaged to contain only Māory players, but eventually included several other Europeans, as well as a number of other nationalities.
The New Zealand Rugby Football Union was not formed until 1892, and players were not expected to be selected from the country’s provincial rugby unions until the 19th century. The players included in a squad that was selected by the player and administrator William Millton were expected to play for several provincial unions, but not for the national body – several of which did not exist at the time of the 1892 tour. The first national body was not officially formed until the 1920s, and it was not until then that players were selected from provincial unions that the national squad could be selected. The national squad that toured New Zealand is now regarded as the first official New Zealand rugby union side, although it is not officially regarded as a rugby union team by the Rugby Union Association of New Zealand and the New Zealand Football Union (Rugby NZ) It is also known as the “New Zealand Natives” The squad included four of his brothers, Alfred,Arthur, Fred and Billy, and included a player from Dunedin, Samuel Sleigh, and Dunedin businessman and businessman William Millton, who was selected to tour South Wales, New Zealand and Australia. The Natives toured the UK in 1883 and 1884 and played 74 matches, including 74 in the British Isles. He also played for Auckland against the visiting New South Wales team, the first overseas side to tour the country, in 1882.