Story: Māori rugby – whutupaoro

Waka Nathan

Waka Nathan

Waka Nathan attempts to toe the ball ahead, playing for New Zealand Māori against the French at McLean Park, Napier, in 1961. Nathan, renowned for his strength and speed, was nicknamed 'the black panther'. He never played in a losing side in his 14 test matches for the All Blacks. Nathan is also credited with the revival of the New Zealand Māori team in the 1970s, when he was the team's manager and coach. He advocated the classic free-flowing style of rugby for which the team was renowned.

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How to cite this page:

Malcolm Mulholland, 'Māori rugby – whutupaoro - Rugby union, 1949 to 2000s', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 26 September 2020)

Story by Malcolm Mulholland, published 5 Sep 2013, updated 1 Jan 2015