Matt Hancock is punched to the ground after losing fight to ex-Premier League footballer Jermaine Pennant on Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins
His handling of the pandemic turned Matt Hancock into one of the most hated political villains ever.
So, when viewers see ex-Premier League footballer Jermaine Pennant take on the former health secretary in a fight on the forthcoming military series Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins next week, there is only one man most of Britain will be cheering on.
The two contestants go head-to-head in a boxing contest on the Channel 4 show where they have to punch each other non-stop for one minute, with the winner decided by the Special Forces experts.
Hancock, 44, will be seen struggling on the floor after the bust-up, despite him putting up a tough fight throughout the series, which was filmed in Ninh Binh, Vietnam last year.
Speaking afterwards, Pennant, who was jailed in 2005 for drink-driving, told the Mail that he ‘wouldn’t be able to walk the streets again’ if he lost the one-on-one battle against Hancock.
Former health secretary Matt Hancock meets his match on the new series of Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins as he takes on ex-footballer Jermaine Pennant
The two contestants go head-to-head (or at least fist-to-fist) in a boxing match on the Channel 4 show’s opening episode
Hancock is seen throwing a punch at the ex-winger before being tackled to the muddy ground while filming the SAS show in Vietnam last year
The MP will appear alongside the likes of former glamour model Danielle Lloyd as he attempts to complete the gruelling SAS-style selection process
He added that despite beating him to the floor, his view of the MP still hasn’t changed.
Pennant said: ‘You have an opinion of him and once you go in there you leave it where it is and then as soon as you come out, your opinion goes back to where it was.’
Hancock will appear alongside the likes of former glamour model Danielle Lloyd, 39, TOWIE’s Amber Turner, 30, and singer Gareth Gates, 39, as he attempts to complete the gruelling SAS-style selection process.
During the first episode, which will air next Tuesday at 9:30pm, Hancock will also be seen walking across two parallel metal bars suspended 50ft off the ground.
After failing the task, his tame effort is compared to ‘Cirque du Soleil’ and the Directing Staff brand him a ‘complete and utter buffoon.’
Hancock later undergoes a psychological grilling by former military officers staff Jason Fox and Chris Oliver on why he wanted to appear on the show.
During the intense conversation, he admitted his regrets over his lack of ‘leadership skills’ after he was caught having an affair with his aide Gina Coladangelo, but still insists he did a good job as health secretary during the pandemic.
Hancock said: ‘I want to push myself. I have been through something really big; it didn’t end the way I wanted it to…’
The Channel 4 series is Hancock’s second notable TV appearance since he resigned from his position as health secretary for breaching Covid-19 guidelines after also starring in I’m A Celeb
He claims that he entered the show because he wanted to ‘test the limits’ and ‘see how deep I can dig’
TOWIE’s Amber Turner, former Love Island contestants Montana Brown and Teddy Sears, singer Gareth Gates, and model Melinda Messenger are some of the recruits taking part
Former rugby player Gareth Thomas, singer Siva Kaneswaran, Liberty X star Michelle Heaton and athlete Perri Shakes-Drayton are also in the lineup
When asked what he is referring to by Jason Fox, Hancock replied: ‘I handled the pandemic, didn’t I?’
He continued: ‘It was the biggest experience of my life… it would be hard to see a bigger professional experience than being the health secretary in a pandemic. I’ve pushed myself in the past, but I want to test the limits… see how deep I can dig.
‘I was managing a very difficult situation in a professional sense… thought I had done a pretty good job… I fell in love with someone I have known since university and who I worked closely with in the pandemic, and I had to resign from government.
‘The truth is I was very careful not to break any of the laws but what I didn’t think was that there was still guidance, it wasn’t legally binding by that point, but it was still the guidance that we were putting out. I regret the lack of leadership at the end.’
And in a typical display of arrogance, he claims he would be able to cope with the pressures put on him by the show’s intimidating Directing Staff, the four ex-servicemen who oversee the brutal challenges.
Former TOWIE star James Argent is one of the recruits taking on the challenge this series following his battle against addiction
Hancock said: ‘I’ve seen pressure so what I’m going to face on this course is water off a duck’s back.
‘I’ve been in some of the most high-pressure situations that you can imagine. In those really high-pressure moments, I hope that I can draw on what I’ve experienced.
‘I’m quite used to being in a hostile environment. Politics by its nature has hostility built into it. I’ve had my share of hostility.’
The Channel 4 series, which runs for seven weeks, is Hancock’s second notable TV appearance since he resigned from his position as health secretary for breaching Covid-19 guidelines he put into place after starring in last year’s I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!
During his stint in the Aussie jungle, Hancock was stung by a scorpion, and ate a camel’s penis and a sheep’s vagina completing the show’s famous Bush Tucker trials.
- Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins begins on Tuesday at 9:30pm on Channel 4
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