herald

Sunday 17 December 2017

I made bitchy rivals scared, says Caroline

SHE'S OUT: Rumours of romance with Kieran were totally untrue

APPRENTICE evictee Caroline McHugh has lashed out at "bitchy" contestants who were intimidated by her in the house -- and insisted there had been no romance with any of the guys.

The self-professed nice girl in the TV3 reality show is eager to shake off Bill Cullen's image of her as a meek "lamb" and has dismissed reports of a "cosy cartel" with two of the other male contestants.

Caroline (26) believes the other female contestants felt threatened by her and constantly looked for ways to undermine her ability.

The solicitor said some of the women turned against anyone who built up a close relationship with the men in the house.

"I think that when people started to say that I was using my feminine charms, they were just becoming a little bit wary themselves that we were going to oust them, we were going to use it to get rid of some of the numbers," she said.

"Any friendship that I struck up in the house was purely down to the people that I had more in common with. It could have been female, it could have been male, it didn't matter."



Attention

After the Roscommon businesswoman was evicted, her former close ally Niamh Humphries said that Caroline was "the type of girl who, to survive in the house, needed male attention".

But Caroline, who brought Niamh into the boardroom when she was project manager (PM), told the Herald she was shocked when her fellow contestant turned on her.

"I just thought she of all people would have understood that it was a game and that everyone kind of had to bring someone in," she said.

"That's why when she was fired and she refused to stand up and hug me or shake my hand, I was so upset that I actually went into the corner and I cried. I think the emotions get the better of you in there.

"It's a horrible situation to be stuck in when you are a PM but you have to do it," she said. "She took a swipe at me. I was upset at her remarks saying that 'she's almost too nice to think for herself'. It was like she was giving me a compliment but taking it away with the other hand."

Caroline said while she struck up a close relationship with her roommate Niamh McDonald (23), she revealed after she was evicted that she never got on with Tara Lee (24) or Sarah O'Neill (30).

"I didn't click with those two girls at all," she said. "With Tara, I knew she didn't like me when we were in there doing the tasks together -- from day one she just took a dislike to me.

"I don't know was she intimidated by me or was it that she didn't know me or wouldn't be familiar with anybody from a legal background."

And Caroline doesn't believe Sarah would be a good choice for Bill's next Apprentice.

"In a professional capacity I felt like she didn't offer a lot," she said. "She would almost look down on you for something you might suggest even though she wasn't saying anything herself."

The solicitor, who was fired by Bill last night when her team failed to impress WEEE Ireland, the company which drives waste recycling, said that she was not involved in a love story inside the house.

"There was definitely no romance whatsoever with myself and Kieran or any of the men," she confirmed. "We were just really, really good friends."

"He is mad about his girlfriend. He's a very loyal guy -- he's lovely."

clairemurphy@herald.ie

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