Belfast Telegraph

Wright saw spider shrink pre-jungle

Matthew Wright has revealed he had three weeks of phobia therapy for two hours a day before going into the jungle.

The talk show host has just been evicted from I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! with campmate Vincent Simone, and told This Morning's Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby about his preparations for coming face to face with spiders.

Known spider hater Matthew said: "Well I freaked out before I did my first trial - not during the trial - I freaked out because I spent three weeks before I went into the jungle having phobia therapy with a psychiatrist because my phobias were so great.

"I was on the verge of pulling out because I didn't want to do a Helen Flanagan and let everyone down because I didn't think I could actually endure the challenges.

"But after three weeks, two hours a day talking with this guy, I knew that I could handle a spider - I had handled British spiders - but when I got there I didn't actually know if talking to a bloke two hours a day for three weeks was going to be enough to get me through, and so I had a panic attack."

Matthew explained that former Fresh Prince Of Bel Air star Alfonso Ribeiro had helped him to remember what his psychiatrist had taught him.

He said: "Alfonso talked me down and I had a bit of a laugh, it stopped me panicking and I went in and every bit of my training came in and I was cool, and from that moment onwards after I had the snakes on me I thought, 'Here we go, I'm on the path to recovery'.

"I feel so, so proud of my journey from a scared man to an unscared man."

But despite overcoming his fears, Matthew admitted that he had become bored in the jungle because the show was being dominated by Joey Essex.

He said: "I'd had enough pretty much by Friday of last week. It seemed obvious that it was the Joey show and I was left twiddling my thumbs."

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