Meet the 21 castaways of the Survivor SA: Island of Secrets

2019-05-16 12:10
 
Survivor SA

Cape Town - It’s here! The much-awaited seventh season of M-Net’s Survivor SA – Survivor SA: Island of Secrets – kicks off on channel 101 on DStv tonight and if the last season is anything to go by, be prepared for a lot of drama, action and even a few laughs.

This latest season comes with a few twists though. 

Instead of the usual two tribes battling it out at the beginning there’ll be three tribes facing Mother Nature in Samoa.

We caught up with the members of each of the tribes to find out a bit more about them and what sets them apart in this gruelling game.

Tribe Ta’alo

Cobus Hugo (28) – architect from Green Point, Cape Town

  •  Why did you enter Survivor SA?

 I entered Survivor for myself (the most selfish thing I’ve ever done), taking myself out of society for an extended period to challenge myself to my core!

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

 My ability to differentiate between playing the game and playing the people! Oh, and my personality!

cobus

Danté de Villiers (31) – coffee shop owner form Dwarskersbos, West Coast

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

Survivor gives me the opportunity to test myself, my life experiences and my love of nature in a competitive environment, which is a unique and different way of pushing yourself.

  •  What will set you apart from the rest?

 My natural ability to adapt to any outdoor environment – may it be beach, jungle or mountains – and the fact that I love a variety of outdoor activities makes me a good all-rounder.

dante

Felix Godlo (29) – sales consultant from Garsfontein, Pretoria

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

Survivor is one of those you don’t add in your bucket normally, so when it shows up, you put all the others on hold and create its own bucket!

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

 The fact that I have a psychology background, as well as having the smartest Survivor fan as my wife, Cherise.

felix

Jacques Burger (27) – industrial engineer from Queenswood, Pretoria

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

 Nothing else tests survival, mental, physical and social skills all in one go. Why wouldn’t you want to enter!

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

 I can't rely on brawn or social charm to play this game. Thus I have to be mentally stronger, constantly aware of my surroundings and a step ahead of the rest at all times.

jacques

Meryl Szolkeiwicz (31) – Pilates instructor from Irene, Pretoria

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

 My life for the last seven years has revolved around my family and raising my sons, but now with Survivor, I saw the opportunity for my own adventure.

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

 I know that I have great social skills with people and that I’m able to read them well. I'm also the only female in my household, so I survive every day! Also, my hair. My hair will set me apart from the rest!

meryl

Tania Copeland (51) – immigration consultant from Somerset West, Cape Town

  •  Why did you enter Survivor SA?

To prove to myself and my children that you’re never too old to challenge yourself.

  •  What will set you apart from the rest?

Age and life experience.

Tania

Ting-Ting Wong (25) – doctor from Durban

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

Four words: diversity, inclusivity, representation and empowerment. Due to the under-representation of Asian people in media worldwide I wanted to showcase not only my ethnicity and skills, but also share the beauty of my struggles growing up as an Afri-Asian (as I have coined myself).

What will set you apart from the rest?

Growing up as an Afri-Asian – being born in Johannesburg, living in rural Eastern Cape, then schooling in KZN and obtaining my degree in Cape Town – I was so lucky to be exposed to so many cultures and different people which helped me develop my passion in working with the community, and so naturally this allows me to connect and bond quickly.

Ting Ting

Tribe Sa’ula

Lee-Anne van Renen (33) – life coach from Durbanville, Cape Town

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

To see if I’m as strong physically as I am mentally

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

I’m hoping my kindness will keep me in the game and that I’m a source of comfort when the going gets tough.

lee-ann

Nathan Castle (25) – media producer from Milnerton, Cape Town

  •  Why did you enter Survivor SA?

 I entered Survivor for the experience, to challenge myself and see what I’m capable of. 

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

My ability to make friends and gain people’s trust will be a major asset for me in the game.

Nathan

Nicole Capper (34) - online magazine owner from Fourways, Johannesburg

  •  Why did you enter Survivor SA?

 I entered Survivor SA because it met the two criteria I set for every single big decision: 1. It’s something that scares the living daylights out of me and 2. It's something I've always wanted to do.

  •  What will set you apart from the rest?

 I only won Mrs SA because I never tried to be what I thought they were looking for. I was my authentic relatable self. I want to be myself, stay in my lane, and not try to look left and right to find my direction.

Nicole

Robert Bentele (29) – events videographer from Richards Bay, Kwazulu-Natal

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

I love challenges and Survivor has been called "the greatest game on Earth". I wanted to find out if I have what it takes to play effectively. Secondly, I entered for spiritual and mental growth.

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

I've been obsessed with universal/spiritual laws for years and I understand them better than most. So I plan to monitor, control and manipulate the energy within the game to give me the desired results.

Robert

Sepei Mashugane (40) – entrepreneur from Soweto, Johannesburg

  • Why did I enter Survivor SA?

My son Kgosi'tsile is a fan of the show and wanted me to enter. He initiated the first part of the entry, and once I was selected he said to me the reason for entering me was because I'm his warrior.

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

I’m a matriarch and leader.

Sepei

Steffi Brink (27) – Miss Namibia 2015 and fitness model from Glen Austin, Midrand

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

It was definitely on my bucket list, and I’ve promised myself to make it my prerogative to tick off everything I believe is part of my destiny.

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

I plan to tap into all the components of strategically, socially and physically outwitting my opponents. I also pride myself in giving the audience more of myself and less of a portrayed character.

Steff

Paul Smulders (54) – real estate agent from Ruimsig, Johannesburg

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

It’s an incredible challenge and no money can buy the experience of being a castaway!  

  •  What will set you apart from the rest?

With well more than 25 years of property negotiation skills worth millions and millions of rands behind my back, as well as life experiences, I’m a go-getter who has what it takes to see tasks and challenges completed.

Paul

Tribe Laumei

Durao Mariano (28) – hotel guest liaison from Newlands East, Durban

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

It’s something I’ve always wanted to do. I remember watching Survivor back in high school and telling all my friends that my uncle (Boston Rob Mariano) is going to win. He didn’t win that season, but he eventually did go on to win Redemption Island, but everyone believed me because we share the same last name.

  •  What will set you apart from the rest?

 Survivor is one big social game and if you can’t play it right you’ll be the one getting played, and I definitely will be doing all the playing. 

durao

Geoffrey Cooke-Tenneson (33) – home loans consultant from Colenso, Kwazulu-Natal

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

 I’m a huge fan of the show and ever since watching the first season back in 2000 I made it a life goal to be part of it one day. 

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

My positive mindset. Keeping in mind that I’m capable of absolutely anything, with enough determination I’ll hopefully be motivated enough to handle whatever the game throws at me.

geoffrey

Laetitia le Roux (58) – nurse from Randburg, Johannesburg

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

 I always wanted to do Survivor and since I’m not getting any younger I decided to enter Season 7 – and I made it.

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

My maturity, my ability to observe and read peoples nonverbal communication and body language. They’ll see me as an "older and nonthreatening person" and that will be their mistake.

laetitia

Mike Venter (21) – radio presenter from Parkrand, Boksburg

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

I watched the first season of Survivor when I was three years old, and cried when Gervase [Peterson] was voted out. From that moment, I’ve been intrigued by the complexity of the game.

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

I’m extremely self-aware because of a career in radio, and I’m calculated. Thus, I can mould my gameplay according to the hands I’ve been dealt, and my charming nature will predispose me to people’s kindnesses.

michael

Mamba Molefe (28) – investment analyst from Plumstead, Cape Town

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

I’m the kind of person who always seeks to challenge myself because I believe that fulfilment doesn’t only come from our nine-to-five jobs, but also from witnessing our own growth.

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

I build relationships easily and always try to be accommodating and understanding. For this reason I don’t think people will consider me much of a threat – especially a physical or strategic one – not knowing that behind my contagious laugh I have a strong fighting spirit and can be very competitive.

Mmba

Rocco van Rooyen (26) – pro athlete from Stellenberg, Cape Town

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

I love a challenge and I thrive on competition.

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

I’m used to competitive environments and I believe I know how people’s minds work.

Rocco

Rose-Lee Smith (33) – crime scene analyst from Paulshof, Johannesburg

  • Why did you enter Survivor SA?

I've done a total 180 with my life. I was so lazy, unmotivated, diffident and cautious, and when I had had enough I started working out, eating healthily and lost 30kg, which catapulted me into this adventurous, energetic, risk-taker! What better way to take my newfound confidence and capabilities for a ride than entering Survivor SA!

  • What will set you apart from the rest?

My work as a police officer means I'm cautious about the company I keep and I'm not going to believe any stories about alliances easily.

Rose

Survivor South Africa: Island of Secrets will air on M-Net on Thursdays at 7pm. It will also be available on DStv CatchUp. Fans can go to www.mnet.tv/survivorsa and follow all the breaking news and conversations around the show on Twitter @MNet/#SurvivorSA and on the official M-Net Facebook page.

Read more on:    survivor sa: island of secrets  |  tv

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