- Matt Burke
Matt Burke Full name Matthew Burke Date of birth 26 March 1973 Place of birth Sydney, New South Wales Height 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m) Weight 14 st 11 lb (94 kg) School St. Joseph's College Rugby union career Playing career Position Fullback Amateur clubs Years Club / team 1990-1996 Eastwood correct as of 2 November 2007. Professional / senior clubs Years Club / team Caps (points) 2004-2008 Newcastle Falcons 58 (373) correct as of 9 December 2006. Provincial/State sides Years Club / team Caps (points) 1990-2004 New South Wales 71 (1172) correct as of 9 September 2006. Super Rugby Years Club / team Caps (points) 1996-2004 Waratahs 52 (959) correct as of 9 September 2006. National team(s) Years Club / team Caps (points) 1993-2004
(878) correct as of 1 September 2006. Sevens national teams Years Club / team Comps 1993 Australia 1 correct as of 2 November 2007.
Matthew Burke (born 26 March 1973 in Sydney) is a retired Australian rugby union player. He grew up in Carlingford, New South Wales, and was schooled at St Gerard Majella Catholic Primary School, Carlingford and St. Joseph's College, Hunters Hill. He played at fullback and is the all time second-highest scorer for Australia in international rugby.
Early rugby career
Starting out by playing the season before commencing at St. Joseph's College, Hunters Hill, Burke's career in schools representative rugby began in 1990 when he toured the United States and Ireland with the Australian Schoolboys. His international playing future was cemented through his association with the Eastwood Rugby Club and the experience gained there. He then progressed to the Australian Under 21s team in 1992 and 1993 at the same time as playing at the Hong Kong Sevens in 1992 and the Rugby World Cup Sevens in 1993. Burke made his Test debut in 1993 when he played in the Third Test against the South African Springboks. Matt has now set up his own rugby coaching experiences under the Matt Burke Sports business. He runs both specialised skill sessions as well as school holiday clinics held at the Shore School.
Feats and playing style
In addition to being a leading fullback and playing with the Wallabies for over a decade, Burke's third year as New South Wales Waratahs captain saw him become the first player in the history of Waratah rugby to play over 100 games.
Burke has met with particular success against New Zealand's All Blacks which included scoring one of Australia's greatest Bledisloe Cup tries, in 1996. From a standing start in Brisbane, Burke broke through numerous New Zealand tackles, throwing a dummy to off-balance several other All Blacks, before running 80 metres for a memorable individual try. In 1998 he scored all 24 of the Wallabies points against New Zealand at the MCG, a world record against the All Blacks.
As the Wallaby fullback in 1999, he scored 23 points against the All Blacks at Stadium Australia, 24 points against South Africa in the Rugby World Cup semi final and 25 points against France in the grand final.
Burke's form suffered in games where his goal-kicking ability deserted him and he was afflicted by a serious shoulder injury in 1998. Despite making it back in the squad for the 1999 Rugby World Cup, it has been speculated that the injury affected his playing style.
Burke was retained as vice-captain and goal-kicker for the 2002 season. During that time he kicked a penalty after fulltime to win the Bledisloe Cup in windy conditions at Stadium Australia.
After the 1999 World Cup, Burke had been plagued by many injuries which severely limited his return to form. Queenslander Chris Latham was soon competing with him for the fullback position. While his goal kicking and fairly regular try-scoring had saved Australia in many games his injuries would soon take their toll.
He then made a transformation into wing and then outside centre to accommodate Latham's place on the team. Many commentators noted that he was however, restricted from playing more freely while not in his favoured fullback position. In 2003, he was given the position back but did not perform well enough to retain it.
Midway through the 2003 Rugby World Cup he was axed from the starting lineup - drawing mixed reactions; he would be relegated to the bench for the rest of his Wallabies career. In 2004, he found himself dropped from the NSW Waratahs. While he was injured early in that season - he still managed to score 62 points from his first six games; placing him ahead of Andrew Mehrtens in the all time points lead of the Super 12 (now Super Rugby) competition.
Coach Ewen McKenzie's decision to drop Burke drew ire from many in the union fraternity, who accused McKenzie of disloyalty and being shortsighted. This was further questioned when NSW attempted to poach footballer Andrew Johns from rival code league, despite Johns' and Burke's similar ages.
Burke played his last international test on 21 August 2004 against South Africa for the final few minutes.
In 2006, in his latest international appearance, he was named as starting fullback for the World XV Rugby team to play the South African Springboks for their first 2006 game.
Burke is still Australia's most capped fullback, having played 54 of his 81 Tests in that position. After breaking 1000 career points for NSW in 2003, he has scored 878 Test points for Australia.
Burke has been voted starting fullback in the Wallaby Team of the Decade.
Owing to his lasting impact in the Waratahs' jersey, the NSW Waratahs' Player of the Year now wins the Matt Burke Trophy.
Career in the United Kingdom
After losing his NSW contract, Burke was offered contracts by eight different clubs - including the Queensland Reds and teams in New Zealand, South Africa, Italy, France and England.
has also won the 'Player of the Year' at the Falcons and was also named as captain of the side.
In February 2007, he obtained a British passport (while retaining Australian citizenship), qualifying through his England-born mother. His main reason for doing so was Guinness Premiership regulations prohibiting teams from having more than one non-EU citizen on the field at any time. This enabled the Falcons to play him at the same time as New Zealand prop Joe McDonnell.
In May 2008 Burke announced his immediate retirement from playing after failing to recover from a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee suffered the previous October.
- Holds 22 Australian Rugby records and 7 International records
- Sixth highest international points scorer of all time at his retirement (now ninth)
- Eastwood Rugby Club (1990–2004)
- World XV Rugby Team (2006)
- NSW Waratahs (1990–2004)
- Rugby Sevens Australia (1993)
- Australian Wallabies (1993–2004)
- Rugby World Cup Australia (1995, 1999 (winners), 2003 (runners-up))
- PM's XV (1999, 2000–2002)
- Barbarians (1999, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005)
- Newcastle Falcons (2004–2007)
- Wallaby of the Year (1996)
- Sydney Morning Herald Player of the Year (1996–1998)
- Twentieth most capped international of all time at the time of his retirement
- Second-highest Super 12 scorer of all time (behind Andrew Mehrtens)
- Second-highest scorer of all time in the Rugby Union Tri Nations (behind Mehrtens)
Notes and references
- "Matt Burke could be a cup surprise" Sydney Morning Herald
- "Matt Burke's great 1996 try" YouTube
- "World XV gears up again for Boks clash" Scrum Online
- "Eales, Burke part of 'Team of the Decade'" Xtra Rugby
- "Matt Burke Ready for Challenge at the Falcons" BBC Sport
- Matthew Burke's Farewell Gallery Sydney Morning Herald
- "Phil Waugh wins M.Burke Cup on an Emotional Night" NSW Rugby
- Matt Burke Player profile NSW Rugby
- Matt Burke Player Profile Australian Wallabies
- Player statistics scrum.com
Australia squad – 1995 Rugby World Cup Forwards Backs Coach Australia squad – 1999 Rugby World Cup Winners (2nd Title) Forwards Backs Coach Australia squad – 2003 Rugby World Cup Runners-up Forwards Backs Coach Barbarian team captains - International Fixtures To 1999
Apr 1915: Edgar Mobbs(vs.Wal) • Jan 1948: Haydn Tanner(vs.Aus) • Jan 1952: Jimmy Nelson(vs.SA) • Feb 1954: Rex Willis(vs.NZ) • Feb 1958: Cliff Morgan(vs.Aus) • May 1958: Jim Greenwood(vs.East Africa) • Feb 1961: Ronnie Dawson(vs.SA) • Nov 1962: Ron Jacobs(vs.Can) • Feb 1964: Ronnie Dawson(vs.NZ) • Jan 1967: Noel Murphy(vs.Aus) • Dec 1967: Stewart Wilson(vs.NZ) • May 1969: John O'Shea(vs.Rhodesia) • Jan 1970: Gareth Edwards(vs.SA) • May 1970: John Spencer(vs.Sco XV) • Oct 1970: Frank Laidlaw(vs.Fiji) • Jan 1973: John Dawes(vs.NZ) • Nov 1974: Willie John McBride(vs.NZ) • Jan 1976: Mervyn Davies(vs.Aus) • Jun 1976: Phil Bennett(vs.Can) • Sep 1977: Gerald Davies(vs.Lions) • Dec 1978: Derek Quinnell(vs.NZ) • Jan 1982: Bill Beaumont(vs.Aus)cancelled • Mar 1983: Fergus Slattery(vs.Sco XV) • Dec 1984: Gareth Davies(vs.Aus) • May 1985: Colin Deans(vs.Ita) • Nov 1988: Philip Matthews(vs.Aus) • Nov 1989: David Sole(vs.NZ) • Sep 1990: Nick Farr-Jones(vs.Eng) • Oct 1990: Nick Farr-Jones(vs.Wales) • Nov 1990: [](vs.Arg) • Sep 1991: [](vs.Sco) • Jun 1992: [](vs.Rus) • Nov 1992: [](vs.Aus) • Dec 1993: Scott Hastings(vs.NZ) • Jun 1994: [](vs.Zim) • Dec 1994: Robert Jones(vs.SA) • 1996: [](vs.Ire) • Aug 1996: [](vs.Sco) • Aug 1996: Arran Pene(vs.Wal) • Dec 1996: [](vs.Aus) •
May 2000: Ian Jones(vs.Ire) • May 2000: Zinzan Brooke(vs.Sco) • Aug 2000: [](vs.Ger) • Dec 2000: Lawrence Dallaglio(vs.SA) • May 2001: [](vs.Wal) • May 2001: Tim Horan(vs.Sco) • May 2001: Gary Teichmann(vs.Eng) • Nov 2001: Rob Howley(vs.Aus) • May 2002: Todd Blackadder(vs.Eng) • May 2002: Pat Lam(vs.Wal) • Jun 2002: Ian Jones(vs.Sco) • May 2003: Taine Randell (vs.Eng) • May 2003: Mick Galwey (vs.Sco) • May 2003: Mark Connors (vs.Wal) • May 2004: Taine Randell (vs.Sco) • May 2004: Matt Burke (vs.Wal) • May 2004: Anton Oliver (vs.Eng) • Jun 2004: Rob Baxter (vs.Por) • Dec 2004: Justin Marshall (vs.NZ) • May 2005: David Humphreys (vs.Sco) • May 2005: Corné Krige (vs.Eng) • May 2006: Raphaël Ibañez (vs.Eng) • May 2006: Will Greenwood (vs.Sco) • Jun 2006: Bobby Skinstad (vs.Geo) • May 2007: Hugh Vyvyan (vs.Tun) • Jun 2007: Hugh Vyvyan (vs.Esp) • Dec 2007: Mark Regan (vs.SA) • May 2008: [] (vs.Bel) • May 2008: Morgan Turinui (vs.Ire) • Jun 2008: Mark Regan (vs.Eng) • Dec 2008: John Smit (vs.Aus) • May 2009: Martin Corry (vs.Eng) • Jun 2009: Phil Waugh (vs.Aus) • Dec 2009: Victor Matfield (vs.NZ) • May 2010: Xavier Rush (vs.Eng) • Jun 2010: Xavier Rush (vs.Ire) • Dec 2010: Matt Giteau (vs.SA) • May 2011: Sergio Parisse (vs. Eng) • Jun 2011: Sergio Parisse (vs. Wal)
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.