Entertainment

Benji Marshall is crowned winner of Celebrity Apprentice Australia


Benji Marshall was crowned the winner of Celebrity Apprentice Australia on Tuesday’s final episode.

The rugby league footballer beat TV presenter Darren McMullen for the prize, $100,000 for his chosen charity.

Benji raised an additional $387,105 in his latest event, bringing the total to $487,105, for his charity, Souths Cares, a not-for-profit institution, closely affiliated with the South Sydney Rabbitohs Football Club.

Benji Marshall (pictured) was crowned the winner of Celebrity Apprentice Australia during Tuesday’s final episode

“Who would have thought, just a failed footy player… Celebrity Apprentice winner. We raised nearly half a million dollars,” Benji said after his win.

During the episode, the two finalists were tasked with creating an event, and whoever raised the most money would win the crown.

“You’ve been a bit of a character on the show. What was your event? Lord Sugar asked Darren.

The rugby league footballer beat TV presenter Darren McMullen (pictured) for the prize, $100,000 for his chosen charity

The rugby league footballer beat TV presenter Darren McMullen (pictured) for the prize, $100,000 for his chosen charity

‘So just in line with the charity, I thought it would be good to look at the whole magickal element of it and have a magickal extravaganza on an island, have some acrobats, magicians, a band playing ethereal, magical music, celebrity chefs, and, uh, people with lots of money. That was the plan, Darren replied.

“I hope your magicians were much better than me, because I tried to make you disappear for ages. What happened to your black book? asked Lord Sugar.

“When you do an event on this scale, you spend so much time getting bogged down in logistics that I couldn’t do what I was good at, which is getting contacts in the black book and fundraising,” Darren replied. .

“What you did was inspired, that website you made online, right? It was a fantastic idea. And you were auctioning off things like trips to Japan, right? ?And Nick here said you had no shame,’ Lord Sugar said of Darren’s event

‘Yeah. So in the end, I certainly did my best, but, uh, there were a lot of unanswered phone calls.

“What you did was inspired, that website you made online, right? It was a fantastic idea. And you were auctioning off things like trips to Japan, right? And Nick said you had no shame,” Lord Sugar continued.

“You walked around the room, harassing every person in it. Trying to get something out, right?

“You walked around the room, harassing every person in it.  Trying to get something out, right?  Lord Sugar asked

“You walked around the room, harassing every person in it. Trying to get something out, right? Lord Sugar asked

'No shame is probably a blessing and a curse, I guess.  And, uh, it's a blessing in a situation like this because we were able to raise some really serious issues,' Darren said.

‘No shame is probably a blessing and a curse, I guess. And, uh, it’s a blessing in a situation like this because we were able to raise some really serious issues,’ Darren said.

‘No shame is probably a blessing and a curse, I guess. And, uh, it’s a blessing in a situation like this because we were able to raise some really serious issues,’ Darren said.

He then explained why he chose his chosen charity, Feel the Magic, which provides early intervention bereavement education programs for children aged 7 to 17.

“Mental health has been a huge part of my life. I had friends who died prematurely, leaving young children. I had my family who lost their parents early and saw the impact it had on them. Finding their father dead and having to try to resuscitate them.

“It was my, my cousin, you know, my uncle. And he took the path that a lot of people take, which is addiction and mental health issues. And it’s just that it’s really important to me. I think we can nip this in the bud early. And they are the only charity in Australia that cares for bereaved children.

Lord Sugar then turned his attention to Benji.

Lord Sugar then turned his attention to Benji. “Listen, Benji, you came here as a former soccer player a year later and you’re already back in the final. So the theme of your event was to dream big,” he said.

“The reason why I like to be involved in this charity is that the children remind me of when I was a child. I feel very connected to them,” replied Benji

Lord Sugar then turned his attention to Benji.

“Listen, Benji, you came here as a former soccer player a year later and you’re already back in the final. So the theme of your event was a big dream,” he said.

“The reason why I like being involved in this charity is because the children remind me of when I was a child. I feel very connected to them,” Benji replied.

In the end, the results spoke for themselves as Darren raised $172,617 while Benji raised $387,105 and won the contest.

In the end, the results spoke for themselves as Darren raised $172,617 while Benji raised $387,105 and won the contest.

Lord Sugar said: 'Benji, I am delighted to say that you are the winner of the celebrity apprentice with the extra $100,000, you have raised $487,105.  That's a lot, a lot of money.  Fantastic.  Well done'

Lord Sugar said: ‘Benji, I am delighted to say that you are the winner of the celebrity apprentice with the extra $100,000, you have raised $487,105. That’s a lot, a lot of money. Fantastic. Well done’

“The biggest thing I wanted to take away from this event was to inspire kids to dream as big as you want. Believe in yourself, work hard and you will be surprised at what can happen.

Judge Janine Allis added: “You could see in the eyes of the children that you had achieved your goal, which was incredible.

“But you had three opportunities to raise funds. And the first was obviously sponsorship. The second was merchandise. The last one was ticket sales, and I was so impressed that you have thousands of dollars worth of merchandise there. And then you just give it away.

The two finalists kissed once the winner was announced

The two finalists kissed once the winner was announced

‘To be fair. I probably made a lot of bad business decisions because I could have raised more money, but I could have missed this opportunity to give free stuff to his kids,” Benji said.

In the end, the results spoke for themselves as Darren raised $172,617 while Benji raised a huge $387,105 and won the competition.

Lord Sugar said: ‘Benji, I am delighted to say that you are the winner of the celebrity apprentice with the extra $100,000, you have raised $487,105. That’s a lot, a lot of money. Fantastic. Well done.’

Pictured: Judges Nick Bell, Lord Sugar and Janine Allis

Pictured: Judges Nick Bell, Lord Sugar and Janine Allis

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