On 18 Apr 1878 Lieutenant John Masterman was appointed to HMS Boadicea (Flag Ship, Cape of Good Hope and West Coast of Africa). He remained aboard ship during the Zulu War in 1879 and was in command of the ship while the Commodore, the Commander, and the senior Lieutenant were ashore with the Naval Brigade. Masterman remained in command of the ship when the body of the Prince Imperial’s body was transported from Durban to Simon’s Bay where it was transferred to HMS Orontes. He commanded “Boadicea” until 30 August when the commodore returned aboard. Masterman was entitled to the South Africa Medal, without clasp. He also served during the 1st Boer War where he was again in command of the ship when the Commodore and the Commander were ashore.