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Chorley's Rick Monk avoids early exit as first candidate fired from The Apprentice

Rick Monk
Rick Monk
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Sarah Byrne has admitted she acted like "a bull in a china shop" as she became the first candidate to be fired by Lord Sugar in the new series of The Apprentice.

The 29-year-old from Manchester, who runs an acting academy for children, faced off against Jasmine Kundra and Jackie Fast in the boardroom after the women's team failed miserably in the first challenge of the series, a shopping task in Malta.

Sarah Byrne, who has admitted she acted like "a bull in a china shop" as she became the first candidate to be fired by Lord Sugar in the new series of The Apprentice.

Sarah Byrne, who has admitted she acted like "a bull in a china shop" as she became the first candidate to be fired by Lord Sugar in the new series of The Apprentice.

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The 16 candidates, who are all vying for Lord Sugar's £250,000 investment in their business, were tasked with finding and buying nine local Maltese items and returning to the airport by 7pm.

But the women's team, project managed by Kundra, failed to deliver all of the items, and confusion and heated arguments led to them buying one of the items twice and heading to the wrong location.

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Byrne, who appeared in Channel 4's Shameless in 2008, told the Press Association: "Obviously, no one wants to be the first one to go and I accept that I came across as a bull in china shop at times.

"Maybe if I had taken a step back there is a chance I could have still been there.

"Claude said I came across as disruptive and forceful. However, I played a major role in the challenge which I could have been credited for."

She also predicted that tennis events company owner Sabrina Stocker would go on to win the show, adding: "I think Sabrina is in with a chance. Me and Sabrina got on very well and I would love her to win.

"She's a real mogul. She's been so successful with her own business and I wish her the best."

The women's team spent a total of 929.48 euros (£824), with fines for errors including being late to the airport and for buying honey after the deadline.

The men's team, led by professional speaker Kayode Damali, notably struggled with one item, buying an octopus instead of scuba diving gear.

However, they still managed to succeed with a total spend of 764.68 euros (£678).

Byrne added: "I felt very privileged to work with Lord Sugar and to, you know, even to have a chance to get on the show for a short time.

"Also, working with Claude and Karren was a privilege, despite what Claude had to say to me. But not everyone is going to like you and once you arrive at that fact and accept it, it won't bother you."

The actress, who admittedly barged in as a deal was being made by her teammates, and Fast, who nominated Kundra for project manager, were brought to the boardroom by the team leader to face elimination.

Lord Sugar's aide Claude Littner suggested that Fast, a sponsorship consultant, had been "very manipulative" in pushing Kundra to be project manager, which the business mogul agreed with.

Lord Sugar was also unimpressed with learning and development manager Kundra's efforts in the task, which saw her only buy one item herself.

But it was Byrne, who had earlier argued with Kundra, accusing her of talking down to her, who was deemed the most unfit for the competition.

Lord Sugar said that Byrne is "impatient and argumentative", and that her "jumping in is all a bit of a problem".

He said he did not believe she has the "capability of progressing in this process".

Following her departure, Byrne said: "I think Jasmine should have been fired over me, she talks the talk and doesn't deliver the result.

"I'm going to go out, I'm going to strive for success, and this is definitely not going to be the last of me."

The Apprentice continues next Wednesday at 9pm on BBC One.