'SAS: Who Dares Wins' viewers love 'inspiring' all-female final

Paige Zima and Shylla Duhaney on SAS: Who Dares Wins. (Channel 4)
Paige Zima and Shylla Duhaney won SAS: Who Dares Wins. (Channel 4)

SAS: Who Dares Wins aired its first ever all-female final on Sunday and viewers praised the recruits for their "inspiring" achievements on the show.

The Channel 4 series sees contestants go through a condensed version of the notoriously tough SAS training, with those who manage to pass the process named as the winners.

Read more: Tom Cruise bonded with late Duke of Edinburgh over love of helicopters

Although the show first started airing in 2015, women were not allowed to compete until 2019 when the Ministry of Defence announced that Special Forces selection would be open to women.

Louise McCullough passed the training in the 2019 series, but had been the only woman to do so - until the 2022 series, where all four finalists were women.

SAS Who Dares Wins recruits hugging
There were emotional scenes as the training concluded. (Channel 4)

Shylla Duhaney, Paige Zima, Claire Aves and Cat Turnbull were the last four recruits standing by the final episode of the series, with Duhaney and Zima announced as having passed training.

Viewers loved the all-female final, with one person tweeting: "Four women in the final, and to think of the hoo ha that went on when it was first announced that women would be included! Congratulations to all, amazing effort!"

Someone else added: "I am LOVING that all of the final recruits are women!"

Read more: Harry Styles set to read CBeebies Bedtime Story

Another person agreed: "Four absolutely incredible women in the final of #SASWhoDaresWins"

Someone else commented: "Incredibly impressive and inspiring. Well done ladies."

Rudy Reyes congratulates Shylla Duhaney and Paige Zima on their SAS: Who Dares Wins victory. (Channel 4)
Rudy Reyes congratulates Shylla Duhaney and Paige Zima on their SAS: Who Dares Wins victory. (Channel 4)

Although only two of the final four were named winners, viewers expressed their admiration for all four recruits.

One viewer tweeted: "Congratulations, both worthy winners. 4 Women in the final, how awesome is that. You should all be proud of yourselves."

Another person added: "So proud of the last 4 especially #18 Shylla who struggled emotionally but turned out to be way more tougher than she gave herself credit for. They ALL should've passed tbh."

Read more: Sam Ryder feels 'fantastic' after Eurovision triumph

Someone else commented: "Them 4 women are unbelievable! Absolute machines!"

Another viewer added: "What an epic finale. All 4 girls should’ve passed! That was just epic, sheer grit and determination. Incredibly motivating and inspiring. Congratulations ladies."

Remi Adeleke and Rudy Reyes
Remi Adeleke and Rudy Reyes joined the team. (Channel 4)

Duhaney, a 33-year-old postwoman and semi-pro footballer, had won over viewers earlier in the series as she spoke in the interrogation room about how upset she had been to be voted "least trustworthy recruit" by her fellow contestants.

She talked about the racism she had faced throughout her life and how it had affected her anxiety, with former US Marine Remi Adeleke sharing his own experiences and encouraging her to keep going.

Her fellow winner, Zima, is a 26-year-old forensic science student and together they tackled a range of seemingly impossible challenges in the Jordanian desert.

This series also saw new recruits Adeleke and Rudy Reyes join SAS: Who Dares Wins as instructors after Ant Middleton was dropped from the show following controversial posts on social media during lockdown.

Watch: SAS: Who Dares Wins stars address racism in powerful mirror room interview