HENRY VI (LARA MARTIN) - A poor man’s Henry V…a very poor man, indeed—like, wrong-side-of-the-tracks poor…undrafted out of Bariol college, Henry spent several seasons as an unsigned free agent playing in the Welsh and French unions. But when his dad was unexpectedly forced into retirement from a chronic groin injury, he got a chance in the pros. Though untested, he has great foot speed (handy for running away), aggressive prayer and a good use of the heroic couplet. He needs a big season for the Lancaster club to avoid being sent back to the minors—or the executioner’s block.
MARGARET (LESLEY DOWEY) – Margaret’s contract will go down in the record books for the most money, land, and titular power any rookie player has ever been offered. Other than her training in Anjou, where she was discovered by William Suffolk, virtually nothing is known about this “petit créature”. Her father technically holds the soccer Title in Naples, but won’t go pick it up because, quite frankly, it’s Naples. Suffolk however, felt that she was worth the price of admission and it will be interesting to see if Margaret can bring any French Finesse to the much-needed Lancaster side.
PRINCE EDWARD (NATHAN SHRUBSOLE) – Taken to the seclusion of France by his mother Margaret in defiance of the regal deal struck by his father, Henry VI, with the Duke of York, not much is known about this boy that would be king other than what little information was attained from double-agent Hume who, after a year-long undercover infiltration assignment acting as Prince Edward’s physiotherapist to gather tactical rugby game-plan information for the Duke of York, barely made it back to the York side, where he whispered these words about Prince Edward with his dying breaths: “I watched the boy for a year…standing on a rugby field…staring at a rugby ball…not seeing the rugby ball…looking past the rugby ball…looking to this match against York…inhumanely patient…waiting for some secret, silent referee whistle to trigger him off…”
WINCHESTER (PETER BLOCH-HANSEN) – The most controversial general manager since Charles of Orleans traded star back Joan of Arc for three donkeys and a bowl of Doritos, Winchester was hired to rebuild the Lancastrian franchise. He’s still working at it. This once mighty club now has all the stability of a Tijuana outhouse in a hurricane. His questionable decision to draft Henry VI as a prospect instead of the proven Duke of York raised eyebrows around the union, but when Winchester extended a lucrative rookie contract to Henry, tongues really started to wag. His inability to bring a top-caliber free agent in the off season is remarkable, especially when top talent like the Earl of Warwick was there for the taking. Our advice: keep your day job.
HUMPHREY (DONALD ROBERTSON) – Youngest brother and team mate of the legendary No. 5, Henry Monmouth, Humphrey was sidelined with a serious injury during the 1415 Five Nations Cup battle against France at Agincourt. His membership in the once ascendant fraternity, and the dying wish of his all-star brother, led to a position as C.E.O. for the Lancaster club. Humphrey antagonized the conservative establishment by repeatedly insisting (and rightly so) that the English fans demand continued participation in the Continental leagues. Unfortunately, the new Captain, young Henry 6, appears to lack both focus and judgment, which spells trouble for loyal fans. Jealous of Humphrey’s continued popularity with Elizabethan Rugby fans, the Lancaster Executive is engaged in a smear campaign and currently Humphrey is being investigated on suspicion of bribery and corruption of league officials; charges which he vehemently denies, and which fans believe have been manufactured.
ELEANOR (DEBRA FELSTEAD) – This lady is a “dame” and none other than the spousal partner of Co-Manager, Duke Humphrey. A dedicated veteran player with excellent stride, Eleanor is tired of living in the King’s shadow, and she dabbles in ancient Maori chants to conjure past rugby spirits to assist in her bid for the Rugby Title. She recognizes that under Henry’s leadership, Rugby is not as popular as it deserves and she is currently in negotiations with Moses Znaimer to change it to the NEW RU. Word on the sidelines says she is none too happy over the newly acquired French Player, Margaret and is worried that either her new rival will take more line-outs or bare Henry an heir. Is the veteran Eleanor being replaced? We’ll keep our eyes and ears peeled during today’s game to see which way the taper blows.
SOMERSET (AIMEE LOCOCO) – A feisty and antagonistic player, it was Somerset’s jibes at Duke York that created most of the current strife. His background in the game is completely suspect – some argue that if it wasn’t for his powerful Uncle Winchester, he’d still be England’s towel boy. Jealous of York’s triumphs against the French teams, Somerset managed to rig a trade so that he might ride the glory tails for awhile, and promptly upon his arrival lost all titles in France. Despite this humiliating set-back, Somerset is determined to retain his position on the English National Team and stay first in line on King Henry’s gravy train.
EXETER (DAVID HOWSE) – To the media, he is Lancaster’s “wild child” high-scoring forward but to those who know him, Exeter is much more complicated. He is the published author of six books of haiku, all focused on the smells of his rugby cleats. A highly sought-after motivational speaker, Exeter has lectured top CEOs, papal nuncios and Inquisitioners on how to overcome chronic masturbation. The paprazzi had a field day last season when he was involved in the highly controversial “BarnYard Gate” – his official position is still “no comment and how do you get these stains out of a clown costume?” Look for big things today.
SUFFOLK (SAMEER DHARGALKAR) – Inheriting a strong intuition for the game and wily street smarts from the grandfather he was named after, William de la Pole (a.k.a. The Devilish Duke of Suffolk) has built a reputation as a crafty player who will do “anything to make the score”. Suffolk strongly supported increasing the foreign player limit for the English side with a particular weakness for a certain French superstar. On the field, William is noted for an uncanny ability to maintain peace on the team and his stellar passes with Margaret of Anjou. But don’t let his gentlemanly appearance fool you, William possesses a nasty mean streak. One just has to see the replay of the “hit” Suffolk put on Humphrey for evidence of this.
CLIFFORD (JODY JAMES) – Clifford has had a big challenge filling the shoes of his father, a well loved Lancastrian Back, who was brutally killed on the pitch last year during a grueling game against York. As a new recruit, the young Clifford has become one of the toughest competitors in the league. With an amazing 15 Caps in his first season, he’s caused some heads to turn. However they don’t turn too long for fear of making eye contact, as he has been suspended for more games than played due to a nasty temper and a big chip on his chest – or, er – shoulders…
NORTHUMBERLAND (TIM LUKIAN) – Led the league in injuries for the last seven seasons. He drew media attention as a fast-footed forward in his rookie season, before he was placed on the injured list for a swollen spleen. Northumberland made a triumphant return in his sophomore year, winning a club record four caps before being sidelined with an acute case of scrotal elephantitis. The following years featured recurrent bouts of dropsy, consumption and Spanish Mule Drivers’ Syndrome… but nothing could stop this kid’s scoring drive. Club managers admit that he is still susceptible to unexpected attacks of leprosy, which have earned this player a reputation for leaving his body on the field to get the win… or at least parts of it.
WESTMORELAND (ISOBEL DONALDSON) – The quick and graceful Westmoreland was appointed by the King to bring the Lancaster team to victory against the rebels. A most intriguing player rumored to be a descendent of the Spanish and a Lord by very loose association to the crown – a rumor the Royal Family flatly denies but hesitates to disprove. Nonetheless, Westmoreland is a strong player, new to the Rugby League and a long-time rival of Salisbury.