Matt Hancock uses Celeb SAS TV show to admit to ‘weak leadership’ amid Covid pandemic

Matt Hancock admitted he regrets his “weak leadership” at the end of the pandemic on Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins.

The 44-year-old was health secretary for almost three years but resigned in June 2021 after it emerged he had broken his own Covid-19 guidance by kissing and embracing aide Gina Coladangelo in his office.

Viewers watched as Hancock was pulled into the first interrogation during Tuesday’s episode and labelled a “complete and utter buffoon” by course instructors for his attempt at completing the initial challenge.

The first challenge saw the 16 contestants tasked with crossing poles at a terrifying height, but the West Suffolk MP barely managed to leave the platform he started on, instead somersaulting through the air.

Hancock is one of 16 famous faces taking part in the gruelling series (PA)
Hancock is one of 16 famous faces taking part in the gruelling series (PA)

Following their initial comments, Royal Marine Mountain Leader Chris Oliver and Special Forces Sergeant Jason ‘Foxy’ Fox then grilled Hancock on his handling of the pandemic.

Hancock said in response: “I was managing a very difficult scenario in a professional sense and thought I’d done a good job.”

When he was then accused of showing “weak leadership” in the pandemic, he agreed, saying: “I regret the lack of leadership at the end.”

After returning to his bunk following the interrogation, Hancock rejected a hug from his fellow celeb as he insisted: “I didn’t cry. I’m not much of a crier.”

While Hancock spoke with his comrades about his experience, the course instructors discussed the politician being “heavily guarded because of who he is” and how he expected people to “dig into him from the start”.

Prior to his jungle stint, Hancock said his physical and mental resilience was tested “to its limits almost every minute of every day” on the series.

He said the closest he came to quitting the gruelling programme was after “having my rib broken” during the jungle phase of SAS selection in Thung Ui, north Vietnam.

He said “I was determined to keep going so I just kept my mouth shut so I wasn’t medically discharged”.

Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins continues at 9pm on Channel 4 on Sunday