Jonah Tali Lomu was born in Greenlane, Auckland, on May 12, 1975, to Semisi Lomu and Hepi Lomu. During his early childhood, he lived with his aunt and uncle in Tonga. However, his mother sent him to Wesley College after his uncle and cousin were lost in gang violence.
He began his professional rugby playing career at the age of 14 and played a game with New Zealand star Eric Rush.
When he was 18 years old, Jonah Lomu represented New Zealand in the national under-19 side and under-21 side.
One year later, he played against France and became the youngest All Black test player, breaking a record set by Edgar Wrigley in 1905.
In 1995, he was included in the squad for the World Cup in South Africa and scored seven tries in five matches.
In 1999, he scored one of the All Blacks’ nine tries in a game against Samoa and scored eight tries at the World Cup.
In 2000, he and his team achieved big victories over Tonga and Scotland and was considered as the match of the century of the Tri-Nations Series with a record crowd of 109,874.
In 2002, he could not play any international matches for several months due to his illness. He then returned to play rugby in 2005. However, he retired from professional rugby two years later due to his failing kidney.
Awards & Achievements
Jonah Tali Lomu was appointed as the Player of the Tournament in the 1995 Rugby World Cup and was the first All Black since 1905 to score four tries against England in a test match.
In 1998, he won a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur and represented New Zealand in the Sevens Rugby event.
In 2002, the UK named the performance of Lomu in the 1995 Rugby World Cup on the list of the 100 Greatest Sporting Moments.
Lomu was the youngest rugby player to score ten test match tries and the first to gain 12 test match tries in a year.