Matt Burke (rugby, born 1964)

Matthew Peter Burke (born 15 September 1964) is an Australian former rugby union and rugby league footballer. He later served as a Waverley Council lifeguard on Bondi Beach.

Matt Burke
Personal information
Full nameMatthew Peter Burke
Born (1964-09-15) 15 September 1964 (age 57)
Gosford, New South Wales, Australia
Playing information
Rugby union
Years Team Pld T G FG P
Years Team Pld T G FG P
1984–87 Australia 23 60
Rugby league
Years Team Pld T G FG P
1988–89 Manly Sea Eagles 28 7 0 0 28
1990–91 Eastern Suburbs 22 3 0 0 12
1992 Balmain Tigers 2 1 0 0 4
Total 52 11 0 0 44
Source: [1]

Early lifeEdit

Born in Gosford on the New South Wales coast,[2] Burke attended Waverley College in Sydney's eastern suburbs, graduating in 1981.[3]

Rugby careerEdit

Burke made his debut for the Australian national rugby union team on 3 November 1984.[2] He played 23 tests for the Wallabies on the wing and scored 15 tries, including five in the 1987 Rugby World Cup.[2] Between 1988 and 1992, he played rugby league for the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles, Eastern Suburbs Roosters and Balmain Tigers in the NSWRL Premiership.[4] After a promising start, Burke's professional career stalled and he was relegated to lower grade football with Easts and Balmain.[4]

Post-rugby careerEdit

For some time after retirement, Burke ran the Mill Hill pub in Bondi Junction.[5] He later spent two seasons as a Waverley Council lifeguard on Bondi Beach,[5] appearing on the factual television programme Bondi Rescue.[6] As of November 2009, he was a proprietor of the Primavera Espresso Bar in the Sydney CBD.[5]

Personal lifeEdit

Burke's father, Peter, was a rugby league international and played for Manly-Warringah.[4][7] Burke has three brothers, Brad, Daniel and Patrick.[7]


  1. ^ "Matt Burke". Retrieved 6 December 2013.
  2. ^ a b c "Matthew Burke". Retrieved 9 March 2019.
  3. ^ "Australian Schools Rugby Representatives". Retrieved 9 March 2019.
  4. ^ a b c "Matt Burke". SmartPack International. Archived from the original on 11 December 2013.
  5. ^ a b c Geddes, Jon (6 November 2009). "Grand squad leaves golden legacy". Archived from the original on 23 April 2018. Retrieved 9 March 2019. There was winger Matthew Burke, who played rugby league with Easts, Manly and Balmain and ran the Mill Hill pub in Bondi Junction.
  6. ^ "How to Rescue a Seagull | Best of Bondi Rescue". Bondi Rescue. 16 June 2013. Archived from the original on 14 December 2021. Retrieved 9 March 2019 – via YouTube.
  7. ^ a b "Peter Burke". Retrieved 9 March 2019.