So, this week’s episode is a summary of everything that’s happened so far in the season. I could bore you by factually walking you through each fight again, but my typing is terribly slow, so I’ll keep it short and sweet.

Team Australia got off to a rough start upon arrival in the great white north. A few losses were the last thing we wanted, but it didn’t affect our morale as a team. We stayed dedicated and trained hard, and ultimately got some great wins of our own, with Tyler Manawaroa, Richard Walsh and Vik Grujic advancing through to the semifinal round.

This week’s recap episode focused on a few things, such as showing some of our extracurricular activities and how often I called out the Canadians. It turns out that one of our arguments with the Canucks—the “Dan Kelly Incident”—was based on bad intel. I’m not going to say who the source was, because “dobbers wear nappies.” So, I’m now pretty sure that Kajan Johnson didn’t actually say anything mean to Dan Kelly, which makes me look mentally insane for two reasons:

1. I just called a guy out on an issue that was created in the fantasy part of somebody’s brain, as they plotted to take your girlfriend on a date to get Gelato. (Yes, you, reading this.)

2) I actually stood up for Dan Kelly. (Just kidding, Kelly. You’re alright.)

This episode also showed some behind-the-scenes footage of when we were treated to a night out halfway through the trip. We went to an ice hockey game. It was a really enjoyable night out, even though most of us Aussies had no idea what was going on. Matt DesRoches was my personal commentator, explaining to me what was going on. He says he played “a little bit” of hockey growing up, which I can only imagine in Canada is equivalent to “a little bit of rugby” in Australia, which is actually a lot.

Everyone had a great night at the hockey, and it was one point where Team Australia and Team Canada actually started to grow a little closer as one big unit. Barriers broke down a bit, and it became more apparent that we weren’t so different. Even though they were the enemy, this was a turning point where, for the most part, tensions started to disappear.

Personally, my favorite part of the footage of the hockey game was Dan Kelly’s revelation that “It’s great to be in a box.” That’s right, watch the episode again, it actually happens and it just made my day. He was most likely talking about the Montreal Canadiens corporate box, in which we were guests, but those facts are less funny, so I choose to pretend they don’t exist. KELLYYYYYYYY!

All in all, the weeks encompassing the quarterfinal rounds were a turbulent ride for all of us. A new environment, cameras everywhere, living with the guys you’re fighting—it was certainly a testing time for members of both teams. Weeks later, both teams had emerged on the other side with some wins, some losses and a whole lot more mental toughness and skill.

Now it’s time to enter the semifinal rounds. I can tell you this for sure: if you thought there’d been some crazy antics, twists and confrontations in the first half of this season, you better keep tuning in to see what’s coming up!

Next week will be fireworks, so don’t miss out!

Until then, keep Badgin’!

Brendan “Badger” O’Reilly would like to thank his cult-like supporters, his sponsors Mass Nutrition Chermside, Sports Master Athletics, Harris Stability Systems, Battlebeard Athletica and gyms Gamebred Combat Club, Alliance Jiu Jitsu Brisbane and Fortitude Boxing. Follow the Badger’s antics on Twitter: @oreillymma
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About The Author

Brendan O'Reilly
TUF: Nations Blogger

Brendan "Badger" O'Reilly prides himself on being a physical and aggressive fighter. He is a purple belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and is a former Greco-Roman and Freestyle wrestling state champion in Australia. Before discovering MMA, Brendan was a representative Rugby League player, while also competing in rodeos. He set aside both sports to focus solely on succeeding in mixed martial arts. Outside of competing as a professional fighter, Brendan owns and operates Gamebred Combat Club, a Cross Fit and MMA gym, in Brisbane, Australia and also boasts a degree in Applied Science.