Survivor winner almost quit on day one
He's $500,000 richer after 50 days on Survivor All-Stars - but David Genat very nearly quit only two hours into the game.
The charismatic Aussie model had a rough return to the game for All-Stars, copping a gruesome-looking spider bite and appearing visibly unwell towards the end of the season.
But speaking to news.com.au hours before the season finale aired on Ten, Genat revealed the shocking true extent of his Survivor injuries, beginning way back on day one.
As the contestants were collecting sticks to prepare their first bonfire, tribemate Mat Rogers threw a piece of wood that accidentally hit David in the shin, splitting his skin to the bone.
"They had to give me 10 stitches right there on the beach - this is about two hours into the game. I actually nearly gave up the game right there," David said.
"I'm a very physical player, and to know that I'm probably going to be hamstrung for two weeks worth of challenges … and I'd never actually had stitches before, so I was completely freaked out. I nearly left the game right then and there. I thought, 'This isn't worth it man. I'm gonna bail.' But I firmly believed I could win, so I stuck with it."
But David's run of Survivor bad luck continued: He copped five separate spider bites during his time in the game, including "one on my face that got pretty bad, one on my butt cheek that turned into an abscess, two on my knee and one on my elbow. The one on my butt was a problem - I was limping around and that didn't heal for a month after I'd left the game."
But wait - there's more.
"In the challenge I beat Brooke in, I dislocated my knee and ruptured my LCL, which I didn't find out until I got back to civilisation. On top of that, I got the flu - I spent the last three weeks of the game just barely being able to speak. I was just trying to save energy for when I was on camera because I didn't want to let down the fans, you know? I always wanted to make sure I was giving as good a confessional as I can."
"So my health was legitimately breaking down - add that to the fact you're not getting any nutrients to your body, you're performing athletically everyday, and I was just a wreck. I felt like I came about as close to death as I have in my life. It was pretty scary, and pretty sobering for my wife when she saw me before that final challenge. I tell you what, I worked for it this time!"
Indeed. After all that, Genat is now $500,000 richer. He told news.com.au that he'd use the prize money to relocate them back to Australia from the US and to help meet the needs of his wife who has lupus, and his daughter, who is dyslexic. He'd also like to make some charitable contributions to the Fijian villages near where Survivor is filmed, some of which don't have clean water. "But I'm going to have some fun too - I'm going to buy at least one new motorcycle, if I can swing it!"
Originally published as Survivor winner almost quit on day one