It is one of the toughest reality shows on TV, and the latest series of SAS: Who Dares Wins features two Welsh hopefuls. The contestants all face gruelling challenges based on elements of the tasks that those hoping to join the special forces face in their selection.
Abigail Hall, a 27-year-old personal trainer from Swansea, and Jamie Davies, a 38-year-old leisure centre manager from Blaina in Gwent, are among two of the group of 20 ordinary men and women put in the middle of the desert in Wadi Rum in Jordan where they are put through their paces over the course of 11 days
Living in a makeshift compound, they are under the control of trained fighters and tasked with going what the producers call the world’s toughest military selection process. Welsh Paralympic champion Aled Davies won the celebrity series of the show last year, and described his time on the show as incomparable to anything else he’d done. You can read about that by clicking here.
In the first episode of the latest series, they were tasked with crossing a desert ravine by rope, and escaping a room full of CS gas as their capacity for team work was put to the test. The instructors stressed from the outset the importance of keeping a full bottle of water at all times due to the immense heat but both Welsh contestants were criticised for not following “the basics” .
The episode also saw them undergo gas chamber training, as Adeleke put it, to teach them how to “keep it together as a team when you are in the middle of a s***storm”.
Explaining the reasons she signed up, Abigail, who was assigned recruit number four, said: “I felt like it would be the biggest challenge I could ever take part in. Nothing would be quite like it, which was correct. Nobody could ever push me to my limits quite like this show did.”
Jamie, who has been given recruit number one, said: “I applied for a couple of reasons really, being a proper fan boy of the show watching it with the wife on Sunday night is something we both look forward to. The main reason was to challenge myself in a way that most don’t get to endure and push myself to new limits.”
The new chief instructor on series seven of the military show is Rudy Reyes, who takes over from Ant Middleton. You can read about him leaving the show here. He joins new directing staff member Remi Adeleke, along with Mark “Billy” Billingham and Jason “Foxy” Fox. Reyes warned the contestants they would need mental, physical and emotional strength in order to negotiate the course successfully.
You can catch up on the first episode of the show on Channel 4 on demand by clicking here.