I'm A Celebrity 2020: Billy Brownless And Dale Thomas Head Into The Jungle
What’s ‘I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here’ without a footy player? Or two?
This year, Dr Chris Brown and Lady Julia Morris have doubled the fun with Billy Brownless and Dale Thomas both entering the camp.
The pair round out the camp to twelve, joining Charlotte Crosby, Myf Warhurst, Tom Williams, Tanya Hennessy, Dilruk Jayasinha, Miguel Maestre, Nikki Osborne, Erin Barnett, Ryan Gallagher and Rhonda Burchmore.
Speaking to 10 daily, Billy said a big motivation for him heading into the jungle was simply because, “it’d be good to go a month off the grog which I’ve tried to do or a week or two, but I can’t do it”.
“There’s always something, I’ve found,” the former Geelong Cats player said, “Footy season you’re having a few drinks, then the racing carnival comes around, then Christmas.” He hoped the booze break would also help him lose a couple of kilos in the camp.
“And just to put yourself out there, the adventure of it all and to test yourself,” he added.
No stranger to the TV, Billy regularly appeared on ‘The Footy Show’ and featured on ‘The Sunday Footy Show’ as well as hosting the Triple M drive show The Rush Hour.
While he admitted he hasn’t watched too much of the show in the past, he did get some hot tips from someone who knows exactly what he’s in for.
“I did get a text from Warnie who figured out I was going in, and I asked him for any tips. He said just be yourself and do all the challenges.”
A text from Warnie! What a treat indeed.
While Billy may be keen to do whatever trials come his way, he isn’t too keen on the idea of eating trials.
“I’m really a meat and three veg type of a person,” he said, “when there’s something different and a bit out there… it could be interesting.
“I reckon I might have a weak stomach. For a big stomach, it’s probably a weak stomach. I was trying to think about the last time I had a spew, and that’s been a few years now, but I might break the drought so look out.”
Joining Billy on his way into camp is Dale ‘Daisy’ Thomas, another AFL player who played for both Collingwood and Carlton.
“I’m not doing anything now, being retired until footy season starts up again, so the opportunity arose and I thought what a sick experience,” Dale said. Despite having some mates who have also been in the jungle before -- like Kris Smith and Dane Swan -- Dale didn’t ask for any advice to keep his involvement as much of a secret as possible.
“The one person I’ve tried to tell didn’t believe me,” Dale said. “My nanna. I told her the other day before I flew out and she just said, ‘No you’re not’. She didn’t believe me, or didn’t want to!”
Dale’s strategy before heading into camp was a simple one: enjoy everything he won’t have access to for the next few weeks.
“I cut back on coffee, but as I knocked coffee out I picked up my alcohol consumption threefold,” he said, laughing.
“I think I put on about eight or nine kilos, which has been refreshing,” Dale added. “Playing football this time of the year is all about pre-season, being as fit and lean as you can. To step out of that environment or that lifestyle and be told ‘mate, you can put on as much weight as you can, you’re going into the jungle’. I’ve never been so happy on Christmas day.”
For Dale, the biggest sacrifice is being away from his phone. “I’m not fazed about [losing] Instagram and social media, if anything a detox from that is something I’ll enjoy. Like everyone I get caught in the trap of mindless scrolling.”
Not being able to contact his partner or daughter and missing events like his mum’s birthday, his daughter’s first day of school and his mate who’s due to give birth any day now.
“Things like that where being able to have the instant gratification of FaceTime. That’s going to be the toughest thing.”
Dale also said being cut off from the news cycle would be difficult, “Especially with what’s happening back home. Friends and family who have been affected by the fires, it’ so grim.” Hoping that when he makes his way out of camp there’ll be some good news waiting for him on the other side, the footy player said anything else wouldn’t worry him too much.
“Not a whole lot really fusses me. I’m pretty realistic of what’s happening, I signed up for it so not too much will grind my gears. We’ll just roll with the punches and see where we end up… hopefully as king of the jungle!”