Belfast Telegraph

Sugar: I don't want sob stories

Lord Sugar admitted that he has mellowed since The Apprentice first began but insisted that he did not want to hear sob stories.

"You get older, you've seen a lot of things and you learn not to get too excited about certain things," he said, at the launch of the latest series of the BBC One business show. "You mellow."

But he said of his reaction to contestants' tales of woe: "You feel like sitting there like Simon Cowell, 'my mum used to whack me, my dad used to laugh, this and that'.

"You think, bloody hell wish I had Sky Plus, get on with it."

Lord Sugar said that it did not bother him if romance blossomed on the show, as it had on previous series.

Asked if the contestants, who are living together in a plush, four-storey west London house complete with swimming pool, get romantically involved this year, he said: "God knows what's going on, we're the last to know.

"It's natural that sometimes people get attracted to each other. It is a work place, there are plenty of people that have met their partners at work, it's no different."

In the first show, Lord Sugar's adviser Nick Hewer compares the womens' group to a "pack of baying hyenas" after they are told off by a shop owner for the aggressive manner in which they try to sell their goods.

Lord Sugar said of the show's famous boardroom showdowns: "Programme-makers of course make it look very tough there.... What you see is 25 minutes of a session that can last up to two to three hours."

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