Falcons Ring the Changes

New Falcons supremo Juan Stoked has masterminded a five talon plan to bring the Auckland franchise the kauri premiership it craves so desperately.

The broccoli baron’s boldest move has been to rebrand the Woodpecker also-rans as the kārearea.

“As the metropolitan and more liberal of the franchises, we are embracing our tikanga Maori and the name change reflects that.”

With a new corporate brand, there is no surprise the barrow boy’s second talon has been to change the team kit.

“We’ve got Karen Walker in to consult and all I can say at this stage is think feathers, lots of feathers and plenty of skin showing. It’s a fabulous little number to show off our gym-toned physiques.”

Stokes’ third talon may be his biggest risk/reward ever. He’s put senior legal counsel Peta Hunt in charge of recruitment and contracting, and Hunt’s first new signing is sure to ruffle the provinces.

“That’s right Peter has secured the services of 2016 individual champion Simon Schteemin Trumpmain,” said the baron to the bookkeeper Fabio Rossini.

“How can the Karearea afford a player of the magnitude of Trumpmain?” tweeted serial squawker Alan Hunks. “Is it true they’ve accessed the trust fund Trumpmain put in play for us to hit Vegas this year? The Horks will be the first to lodge an appeal.”

Stokes wouldn’t be drawn on the minutiae of funding sources, but he was clear that the fourth talon in his plan has been to “throw money at the problem until the results change.”

The fifth talon is a strict enforcement of the team’s paleo diet. While it is business as usual for the northern residents, emergency ice-cream sandwiches will be on stand-by for the out-of-province players Meates and Trumpmain.

“Leadership is about setting standards for a team to follow and I’m happy to see Simon’s addiction to cheese is being replaced with our new team trend of edible Kale underpants,” said Stokes on the eve of a secret Karearea training camp at Cape Kidnappers.

Hearing of the changes, the bookmakers have shaved the Falcons odds from ‘never in a millennia’ to a more favourable ‘save your money for next year.’

There can be only one…