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Erin Holland hits back at claims SAS Australia was 'rigged' and defends Sam Burgess' win


Model and SAS Australia star Erin Holland has defended Sam Burgess’ controversial win on the military-style show, after he became the only recruit to pass selection.

Speaking to Daily Mail Australia on Wednesday, the 32-year-old said that the former footballer deserved to take home the trophy because ‘he was incredible in the course itself’.

Erin also denied rumours the show was ‘rigged,’ after a source came forward with claims that the Channel Seven series ‘was always The Sam Burgess Show from day one’. 

EXCLUSIVE: Speaking to Daily Mail Australia this week, Erin Holland has hit back at claims SAS Australia was 'rigged' and defended Sam Burgess' win

EXCLUSIVE: Speaking to Daily Mail Australia this week, Erin Holland has hit back at claims SAS Australia was ‘rigged’ and defended Sam Burgess’ win

‘Obviously I wouldn’t be privy to any of that information as a contestant myself,’ Erin began. 

‘Obviously there was a lot of press and promo around him and he was obviously a controversial figure people were interested to see. But from a physical, mental, and team work perspective, he passed because he was incredible in the course itself,’ Erin said. 

‘From the perspective of the course, there’s no way you would begrudge him winning. The other guys as well who made it to the end, no one thinks he didn’t deserve to win, he was truly straights ahead of many of us in the physical aspect and he genuinely passed all the tasks.’

'Obviously there was a lot of press and promo around him and he was obviously a controversial figure people were interested to see. But from a physical, mental, and team work perspective, he passed because he was incredible in the course itself,' Erin said

‘Obviously there was a lot of press and promo around him and he was obviously a controversial figure people were interested to see. But from a physical, mental, and team work perspective, he passed because he was incredible in the course itself,’ Erin said

She added that she was impressed with how ‘agile’ Sam was, despite his size.  

‘I’m around 57kg and he’s around 117kg. When you’re carrying a 20kg backpack, that feels very different for me than him,’ she said with a laugh. 

She added: ‘I don’t for any reason think it’s rigged, he definitely deserved to pass the course.’

'From the perspective of the course, there's no way you would begrudge him winning. The other guys as well who made it to the end, no one thinks he didn't deserve to win, he was truly straights ahead of many of us in the physical aspect and he genuinely passed all the tasks,' she added

‘From the perspective of the course, there’s no way you would begrudge him winning. The other guys as well who made it to the end, no one thinks he didn’t deserve to win, he was truly straights ahead of many of us in the physical aspect and he genuinely passed all the tasks,’ she added

Reflecting on her own time on SAS Australia, Erin said the experience was ‘life changing’. 

‘It was truly, a life changing experience for me,’ she said. 

‘I put myself so far out of my comfort zone, I’m no athlete… I train for my mental and physical health.’

Gruelling: Reflecting on her own time on SAS Australia, Erin said the experience was 'life changing'

Gruelling: Reflecting on her own time on SAS Australia, Erin said the experience was ‘life changing’

Last week, former Rabbitohs star Sam was named the winner of SAS Australia after becoming the only recruit to pass selection. 

During his time on SAS, Sam, 32, revealed his issues with addiction and admitted to cheating on ex-wife Phoebe Burgess during their marriage.  

Sam said after being declared the winner: ‘What I’m taking from it is I’m going to pour all my time, my emotion, into the places that deserve it in my life.

‘It starts with my kids and just making sure I’m the best role model for them. It’s just a great lesson in life.’  

Winner: Last week, former Rabbitohs star Sam was named the winner of SAS Australia after becoming the only recruit to pass selection. During his time on SAS, Sam, 32, revealed his issues with addiction and admitted to cheating on ex-wife Phoebe Burgess during their marriage

Winner: Last week, former Rabbitohs star Sam was named the winner of SAS Australia after becoming the only recruit to pass selection. During his time on SAS, Sam, 32, revealed his issues with addiction and admitted to cheating on ex-wife Phoebe Burgess during their marriage

A source exclusively revealed to Daily Mail Australia earlier this month that one recruit on this year’s SAS Australia was given preferential treatment all season long.

And at the weekend, another source came forward with claims that the Channel Seven series ‘was always The Sam Burgess Show from day one’.

Speaking to The Daily Telegraph on Sunday, an insider alleged that producers ‘had the Sam Burgess redemption story narrative in their heads’ from day one.

Further, other contestants on the series were reportedly miffed after they found out that the former South Sydney Rabbitohs star, 32, was getting more air time than them. 

Speaking out: His ex-wife Phoebe meanwhile recently slammed his 'redemption' edit to The Weekend Australian . She said what viewers saw was a, 'a careful edit, a carefully curated comeback show' instead of Sam showing, 'a true sense of responsibility' and 'owning behaviour, wanting to change that behaviour'

Speaking out: His ex-wife Phoebe meanwhile recently slammed his ‘redemption’ edit to The Weekend Australian . She said what viewers saw was a, ‘a careful edit, a carefully curated comeback show’ instead of Sam showing, ‘a true sense of responsibility’ and ‘owning behaviour, wanting to change that behaviour’

Another explosive claim was that Burgess, who was forced to retire from the NRL with a chronic shoulder injury, wasn’t actually able to complete the final rope hang challenge. 

Rather, they suggested that the footage was edited to make it look like Sam endured the full 90 seconds. 

His ex-wife Phoebe meanwhile recently slammed his ‘redemption’ edit to The Weekend Australian.

She said what viewers saw was a, ‘a careful edit, a carefully curated comeback show’ instead of Sam showing, ‘a true sense of responsibility’ and ‘owning behaviour, wanting to change that behaviour’.

Erin meanwhile, who is an actress, singer and presenter, is the host of the Tia Maria Two Of A Kind Podcast.  

She has interviewed the likes of Amy Pejkovic, Jono Castano and Sharon Johal for the series.  

‘It’s been awesome, I really enjoy delving into podcasts… Everyone has a story and something to share so getting to podcast, that has been a really great transition,’ Erin said. 

She added: ‘The idea is pour yourself a drink and have a listen to someone who is pretty inspirational in their own right.’  

New work: Erin meanwhile, who is an actress, singer and presenter, is the host of the Tia Maria Two Of A Kind Podcast. She has interviewed the likes of Amy Pejkovic, Jono Castano and Sharon Johal for the series

New work: Erin meanwhile, who is an actress, singer and presenter, is the host of the Tia Maria Two Of A Kind Podcast. She has interviewed the likes of Amy Pejkovic, Jono Castano and Sharon Johal for the series



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