Hilda Mariu (nee Peters) only played rugby league for the first time at age 19, but she has had a
significant impact as a Kiwi Fern over the past six seasons. Mariu’s versatility has seen her play Tests
on the wing and in the second-row, as well as off the bench.
The Counties-Manukau rep made her New Zealand debut as an interchange in the 12-8 victory over
Australia in late-2014. The 31-year-old featured in the historic Kiwi Ferns-Jillaroos series at the 2015
NRL Auckland Nines a few months later.
She started in the second-row in the 2015 Anzac Test loss but missed the Kiwi Ferns’ 2016 schedule.
The strongly-built utility returned for the 2017 Anzac Test and played four matches at the Rugby
League World Cup, scoring a try from the wing against Papua New Guinea before reverting to the
second-row, crossing for another four-pointer in the semi-final thrashing of England and featuring in
the valiant loss to Australia in the final.
She married Kiwi Ferns legend and teammate Laura Mariu in March 2018, before both picked up a
Warriors contract for the inaugural NRLW season; her sister, Kahurangi Peters, was also in the
squad. Deployed on the wing by coach Luisa Avaiki, Hilda had the honour of scoring the first-ever
NRLW try as the Warriors upset the Roosters.
Fluent in te reo and wearing a moko, Mariu played in another historic match in early-2019 – the
Māori All Stars’ win over the Indigenous All Stars in Melbourne.
She lined up at lock in Papakura Sisters’ 2019 ARL grand final win before playing on the wing in the
Kiwi Ferns’ mid-season win over Fetu Samoa. Mariu played all three matches of the Warriors’ second
NRLW campaign on the flank.
Mariu’s utility value came to the fore again for the Warriors in 2020, making starts on the wing, at hooker and off the bench as one of just five New Zealand-based players to go to Australia for the club’s NRLW campaign. She was subsequently named in the Kiwi Ferns’ wider squad but did not play in the Test against Fetu Samoa.