Piri Awahou Tihou Weepu (born 7 September 1983) is a former New
Zealand rugby union player. Weepu plays for Wairarapa Bush in the
Heartland Championship. Generally Weepu plays as a half-back but has
also been known to play in the fly-half position. He has represented
the New Zealand national side, the All Blacks. He first won national
honours against Wales in 2004. In 2005 was called back into the All
Blacks squad for the first Tri Nations test against South Africa,
having missed selection for the 2005
British and Irish Lions
British and Irish Lions tour.
He is the brother of former rugby league professional Billy Weepu.
In October 2017, Weepu announced his retirement as a rugby player.
1 Early life
2 New Zealand rugby career
3 Leading of the Haka
4 England rugby career
5 France rugby career
6 NRL speculation
8 External links
Of Māori and Niuean descent, Weepu hails from Wainuiomata. He
played his senior rugby with Hutt Old Boys Marist, under the tutelage
of his mentor Derek Bruce, but returned to his roots and signed with
Wainuiomata RFC where, along with fellow local product Earl Va'a, he
helped the club win promotion to the Premier Division in 2006 and
turned the club into genuine title contenders. He attended Te Aute
College where he was Head Boy in 2001.
New Zealand rugby career
During the 2006
Super 14 Final, Weepu was knocked unconscious during
an attempted tackle. However, due to the bizarrely thick fog during
the match, the team doctors were unable to see that he had been
unconscious. Weepu continued playing and went on to miss a tackle on
Casey Laulala, conceding the match-winning try. Later Weepu admitted
that he could not remember the game at all.
Weepu was not selected for the
2007 Rugby World Cup
2007 Rugby World Cup squad, announced
on 22 July 2007, with Canterbury halfback Andrew Ellis
2011 Rugby World Cup
2011 Rugby World Cup Weepu played out of position in the
last pool match against Canada, coming off the bench during the second
half to play fullback as a replacement for Mils Muliaina. There was
great pressure on the
All Blacks to win the Cup, not having won it
since 1987. This time round it looked to be New Zealand's year, but
the unthinkable happened:
All Blacks playmaker
Dan Carter was struck
with a season ending groin injury. This caused much media attention,
and betting odds in favor of the
All Blacks began to decrease. In the
All Blacks vs Argentina quarter-final match, Weepu took on Carter's
goal kicking duties. Landing seven penalties, with only a missed
conversion, Weepu was named Man of the Match, helping guide New
Zealand to victory, as well as earning him the nicknames "Mr Fixit"
and "saviour". In the final against France he missed
two penalties and a conversion, however New Zealand emerged victorious
due to a Tony Woodcock try and a
Stephen Donald penalty.
Weepu was left out of the
All Blacks squad for the June tests in 2013,
being told he needed to work on his speed and defensive
ability. He was named in the squad for the late
Autumn tour of Argentina, but received little playing time.
Leading of the Haka
Weepu was an integral part of the
All Blacks when it came to
performing the haka before each game. Of the 71 tests he played in he
was the haka leader in 51 of them (12 November 2005 – 22 June 2013);
this is the most for any player since the introduction of Kapa o Pango
in 2005. 26 times he led the
Ka Mate version of the haka as well as 25
times the newer Kapa o Pango haka.
Piri Weepu leads the Kapo o Pango haka for the All Blacks
England rugby career
Weepu signed to join
London Welsh in July 2014 and left the Auckland
Blues at the end of the 2014 Super Rugby season.
On 27 February 2015, it was announced Weepu had been released early
London Welsh and would join fellow Aviva Premiership side Wasps
on a short-term deal until the end of the 2014-15 season.
France rugby career
On 23 February 2015, it was announced Weepu would be joining Top 14
side Oyonnax on a two-year deal from the 2015-16 season. On 15
January 2016 Oyonnax have announced the termination of Weepu's
contract with immediate effect, without giving any reason.
Instead, on 28 November 2016, Weepu signed with
Pro D2 club RC
Narbonne with immediate effect during the 2016-17 season.
In 2007 the
Gold Coast Titans
Gold Coast Titans approached Weepu to play rugby
league. Titans CEO
Michael Searle said "He's a good player with
plenty of experience at the top level in rugby union, and it would be
good to get him back to rugby league if we can."
^ Walter, Brad; Mascord, Steve; Prichard, Greg (12 August 2005).
"Former Kiwi prop Todd named in drug-ring investigation". Sydney
Morning Herald. Fairfax. Retrieved 11 July 2014.
Piri Weepu announces retirement". NZ Herald. 2017-10-14.
^ Governor-General of New Zealand (29 July 2008). "Lunch for New
Premier of Niue" (Press release). New Zealand Government. Retrieved 11
^ Dow, Jonathan (10 September 2005). "Te Aute's glories now in print".
Hawke's Bay Today. Retrieved 20 December 2014.
2011 Rugby World Cup
2011 Rugby World Cup final: New Zealand 8-7 France". BBC. 23
October 2011. Retrieved 4 December 2017.
^ Napier, Liam (10 July 2014). "
Piri Weepu to leave Blues for London
Welsh". Dominion Post. Fairfax NZ. Archived from the original on 11
July 2014. Retrieved 11 July 2014.
^ "Weepu to join London Welsh". Rugby Week. Sports Digital Media. July
2014. Retrieved 11 July 2014.
Piri Weepu and Martyn Thomas join Premiership club". BBC
Sport. 27 February 2015.
^ "Weepu swaps
London Welsh for Oyonnax". ESPN Scrum. 23 February
RC Narbonne sign former All-Black halfback
Piri Weepu from
Oyonnax". L'Independent.fr. 28 November 2016. Retrieved 27 March
^ Walter, Brad (31 July 2007). "BK lures Perry to Sea Eagles". Sydney
Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 16 October 2011.
Piri Weepu at AllBlacks.com
Tom French Memorial
Māori rugby union player of the year
New Zealand squad –
2011 Rugby World Cup
2011 Rugby World Cup (2nd Title)
Cruden (Replaced Carter)
Donald (Replaced Slade)
Gear (Replaced Muliaina)
New Zealand squad – 2006 Tri Nations Series