While South Africans may have been in tears at losing the cricket match – and KFC T20 International Series – against Australia at Newlands on Wednesday evening…Aussie cricket legend Shane Warne has been filmed sobbing after holding a South African baboon spider named Britney.
Warnie, as he’s known in Australia, has a well-documented phobia of spiders. But for the sake of his fellow team members on Channel Ten’s “I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here”, he was forced to confront his biggest challenge ever.
“It’s the ultimate – you can’t test me with anything that’s harder,” he says on the show,which is filmed in South Africa. “It’s the hardest thing I’ll ever have to do in my life.”
The final five were presented with the challenge, in which each had to hold the highly venemous tarantula for 30 seconds, in order to win chocolate and ice-cream spiders (ice-cream in a soft drink) for dessert. It may not seem a lot, but for the team who have already spent “40 days in the isolation of the African jungle”, it’s tantalising.
Watch Video: Shane Warne and the South African Spider
Watch from the start…and then skip to 6’40” if you only want to see the Shane Warne footage.
Knowing he has arachnophobia, team members let him know it’s okay if he doesn’t complete the challenge, but Warnie -who says he’s given “everything a crack” in the last six weeks on the show – doesn’t want to “let the team down”.
On hearing the details of the challenge, he almost immediately goes into shock and starts shaking, which can make holding a spider even more dangerous. But it’s all about “Aussie mateship” and with the support of his mates, his desire to do it for them, and his own mental strength, he completes the task…but then leaves the group and is seen hunched over, sobbing.
Although he hit the spider challenge for six, Warne was knocked out of the TV reality show at the end of this episode.
Hopefully he’s feeling better since Australia won the cricket this evening by six wickets with four balls to spare, making it the second highest T20 International score at Newlands and the highest when batting second.
During his stint on the show, Warne discussed his extravagant life with actress Elizabeth Hurley, got bitten by an anaconda after dipping his head in a box of writhing snakes; downed “stomach-churning tucker” of blended rats, fish guts and antelope blood; and took a cockroach and maggot shower!
At the end of tonight’s show singer and fellow contestant Anthony Callea called on Australians to “drink a spider in Shane’s honour”.