Fans of Australian Survivor 2018 Champions verses Contenders would have mixed emotions about the blindside that saw Benji sent to the Jury Villa.
Yes, he came across as a little bit of a wanker on the reality show, but he was also one of the hardest game players on the island.
To quickly recap, the 26-year-old was eliminated because of a re-vote which saw contestants only able to vote for either himself or fellow threat Sharn.
Despite having Shonee’s vote advantage (meaning they could steal another contestant’s vote) and an immunity idol in his pocket, Benji was almost unanimously voted out by both champions and contenders.
To us watching at home, the mistake that put the nail in Benji’s coffin was his cringey conversation with fellow contestant Brian in which he was caught in an awkward lie.
The entrepreneur from Victoria told Brian that Sharn was planning to vote for him, seemingly forgetting Brian was wearing the immunity necklace around his neck.
But according to Benji, that conversation was actually manufactured by producers. in real life, it went down quite differently.
You can watch the awkward exchange between Brian and Benji below. Post continues after video.
I don’t think that moment was my downfall, that was a little bit of TV magic for you,” Benji told Mamamia.
“That conversation didn’t actually happen that way. I was actually saying that Sharn would come for Brian if he let me go.
“I was the big villain out there who Sharn was coming for, I said to Brian ‘if I go, she’s coming for you next, so you want to keep me around’, that was the conversation. But it was much more entertaining to think that I got caught out in a lie.”
Instead of that conversation, Benji said his actual downfall was perhaps not choosing the right person to ‘steal’ a vote from at tribal coucil. That, and keeping his hidden immunity idol in his back pocket.
“I knew it was over a soon as Jonathan said, we’re going to re-vote and this is how it’ll work. The ultimate downfall for me was not recalculating that vote advantage draw, and that’s when my mind went to jury villa and all the food I was going to eat,” he said.
“I don’t feel like I needed Brian or Monica’s vote to stay safe, I just needed to play the idol and save the advantage for the next round. [Shonee and I] decided to use the vote advantage on Sharn but in hindsight, we really should’ve used it on someone else, and that’s why I left.”
Benji is the third person to leave Survivor with a hidden immunity idol this season – both Mat and Russel also failed to play their idols which would’ve kept them in the game. In the game of Survivor, leaving with an idol in your pocket is kind of embarrassing, but Benji said it’s part of playing a big game and taking risks.
— Australian Survivor (@Survivor_AU) September 19, 2018