Stephen axed by sneaky team mates on Survivor SA

2014-03-17 07:27
Johannesburg - Three ‘surprise’ votes at the show’s dreaded tribal council turned business analyst Stephen Walker (25) into the ninth castaway to be voted off the island on M-Net’s Survivor South Africa: Champions.

His departure, the result of his failure to negotiate the risk of the numbers game and sneaky maneuvers by his former alliance, now leaves Mark Fish’s underdog tribe Utara with 5 members, while Corne Krige’s Selatan boasts 8.
Despite Selatan’s consecutive victories at immunity challenges since the tribe shuffle, Team Utara has illustrated that they are superior players when it comes to ingenious social engineering. Puppet masters Shane and Marian expertly engineered Stephen’s epic blindside, while David craftily slotted into the role of the sacrificial lamb.
The Alliance made it so clear that they would be voting David out after their immunity challenge defeat, that Stephen openly commiserated with the farrier and congratulated him on his achievements in the game. Come tribal council time, though, it was clear that Stephen was taken for a ride.
His repeated refusal to ‘get his hands dirty’, in Marian’s words, didn’t help, with David also expressing his concerns about Stephen’s consistent inability to commit to the machinations of his alliance.

The tribes played their reward challenge this week with the help of SuperSport presenters Carol Tshabalala and Derek Alberts – with a desirable prize on offer. The winning tribe would be treated to a pool party powered by Hunter’s Dry – featuring ample quantities of refreshing Hunter’s Dry, a chance to braai wors and chops, piles of salad and bread, and even a freshwater shower.
Each of the guests were strapped inside massive cage balls and had to negotiate their way through a maze, directing blindfolded tribe members. Once they reached the end, the tribe had to maneuver a huge pivoting table to get a ball safely through a maze and into a small hole – again, blindfolded, and listening to instructions from their guest and two designated tribe members. The challenge swung both ways as the blindfolded tribe members took instructions, but Utara ultimately claimed the prize in a neck-and-neck finish, which Selatan’s Graham described as his lowest moment on the island so far.
As Utara feasted at the pool party, Shane described his first sip of ice-cold Hunter’s Dry as “a religious experience”, while Marian joined him in a covert toast “to the final 2”.
Selatan wins immunity again

After a morale-boosting speech by Corne on the beach at Selatan, his tribe emerged at the immunity challenge with a grim determination to maintain their grip on the immunity idol. With Altaaf marshalling the troops as they tried to direct cannonballs down a massive chute to smash tiles at the bottom, Selatan trounced Utara 5-3, sending their competitors to tribal council.
Back on the Utara beach, Stephen and Shane discussed how to go about voting, with the latter reiterating his trust in his alliance members and urging them to vote with an eye on the looming merge. Shane initially leaned towards eliminating David, but Marian convinced him that Stephen was a bigger threat if he was still around for the merge.

The duo informed their alliance members – excluding Stephen – that they’d be voting one of their own off, and tasked David with pretending he was next to go. “If Stephen spent as much time playing the social game and talking to people as he did pondering issues, he’d be a better player,” said Shane.

At Tribal Council, all signs pointed to David’s departure, with the farrier even admitting to Nico that he’d packed his bags. Sivu named him as an omen of ill-luck, as Utara had adopted the Selatan pattern of winning reward challenges and then losing immunity challenges, since David had joined them after the tribe shuffle. The votes were cast and Stephen’s dismay was plain to see as his name came out of the chest three times, to David’s one – enough to send him home.
Survivor South Africa: Champions is broadcast on M-Net on Sundays at 17:30, with a repeat on M-Net Series Zone on Saturdays at 13:00.
Watch Stephen’s exclusive Exit Interview on
For the latest updates, go to the official Facebook page SurvivorSA or join in the Twitter conversation @Survivor_SA and #TeamFish or #TeamKrige.
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