Bachelor

Luke from 'The Bachelorette' is still trying to figure out why he was eliminated

It was a major shock that Luke didn’t get a rose.

By Jessica Chandra

We are shook at last night’s elimination result on The Bachelorette Australia. Sophie Monk had to send two men home, and for some reason she said goodbye to Luke McLeod and Mackane Reid!

We can kind of see the Mack thing. He was a nice guy and all, and it was sweet that he’d had a crush on Sophie for decade, but he did fangirl a little too much around her.

But we were super shocked to see Luke get the boot, because he seemed like such a frontrunner. Luke scored Sophie’s second solo date — which seems like ages ago — and they appeared to have good chemistry. She was also easily charmed by him when they met for the first time, and compared him to George Clooney.

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Alas, it wasn’t meant to be for Sophie and Luke, who works as a business culture consultant in Sydney.

Luke chatted to Cosmo about why he thinks he got sent home so early, why he found the Bachelorette ‘process’ quite frustrating, and the truth about that time he dated Matty J’s new girlfriend, Laura Byrne.

Luke! What happened? We thought you’d make top four at the very least.

I’m still trying to figure out a few things myself. Obviously, filming finished about six weeks ago, so I have had a bit of time to do some self-reflection, to try and put the different pieces of the puzzle together. I think there’s a few things that kind of compiled together that probably added to her reason as to why. We had a very brief chat at the end there.

After our single date — which was awesome — I knew she was obviously going to go on other single dates, and spend time with the other guys and get to know them, so I was quite cautious with my emotions, and some of the other guys were quite forward in how they felt about her. I think I was a lot more reserved, and waiting for the right opportunity to let her know how I felt about her.

And then with the intruders coming in, that kind of put me back again! I got a fair bit frustrated with the process, and with that, to be honest with you, and I think she picked up on that as well. In some ways it might have been a case of saving heartbreak later on, calling it quits now. The most important thing is that she’s found love, and she’s happy now, and I’m so happy for her. I suppose that’s what matters.

How did you feel about Sophie?

I liked her! I liked her a lot. I thought there was chemistry there on our first date, and it was tough to keep it [my feelings] in, and maybe I shouldn’t have done that, maybe I should have just been a bit more open, and told her how I felt.

So many ‘what ifs’!

So many! But I’m also a believer in what happens for a reason — I have to look at all the positives, and as I said, she’s found someone she’s madly in love with. That’s it, and I’m happy for her.

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What were your vibes on Stu, who everyone thinks will win?

[Laughs] Stu is a really good bloke, he actually is. Looking at what Sophie wants in a man, he does tick a lot of the boxes. I got along with him really well, and when he came in, he was really accommodating, like, “Boys, I get it, I feel like an imposter here.” He kind of got us onside really quickly. I’ve got no bad feelings.

But did it help my situation? Not at all! [Laughs] Because there was an obvious connection there with Soph. I was always trying to be patient and wait for my next time, and then he jumped in, and I was like, ‘Ah, bugger!’

What frustrated you about the process?

It’s just such an unusual experience! I kind of knew how it was gonna play out — a bunch of guys competing for the love of one woman — but you’re so isolated from everything else, and you’re cut off from all your friends and family, so you can’t really talk about stuff. And for me, I’m a pretty reserved sort of guy, so doing this was really getting out of my comfort zone — you’ve gotta put yourself out there. So all of these different elements compiled together. You tried to not let it get to you, but it’s inevitable. Those elements did frustrate me. As I said, I think Sophie picked up on a few of those things.

Even just making the decision to do this was massive for me, and then to go through with it all, and try to be as vulnerable and open as possible was even more of a challenge. But I guess I knew I was throwing myself into that, so I’ve got no one to blame but myself.

Did you know Sophie was going to be the Bachelorette when you applied?

I didn’t know actually! I kind of found out halfway through the casting process. I didn’t know it was going to be her at the start.

Why did you apply?

To be honest with you, I was in a long-term relationship, and once I got out of that, and was in a position to meet another person… I work a lot, I’m not the most outgoing guy. Then this popped up, and I thought, ‘I need something to jolt me, and get me out of my comfort zone.’ One thing led to the next, and now what.

And now you’re doing elimination interviews!

I know!

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Was the Jarrod and Blake rivalry real, or has it just been super amped up on TV?

Obviously it’s a TV show, so they’ve got to do bits and pieces to make great viewing. They’re both actually good blokes — they’ve both got good qualities in them. But they’re both very different as well. When you get two very different blokes, and you put them in isolation, stuff’s gonna happen. Off-camera, they would have a game of basketball, and it would be all good, but other times things got heated. They’re alright — I was probably more the mediator when things got fiery, like, “Boys, it’s all good, chill.”

So if you’re taken away from your real world, can you really be you in a situation like this, when you’re trying to fall in love?

I honestly tried to! I really did try to stay true to myself, and be me. I’m not gonna lie: it’s such a foreign environment, and with the tension and pressure, there’s times when you go, “What? Did I say that? I didn’t mean that.” The environment does really test you, and sometimes you find yourself going, “That’s not really in my nature.” I think most of the guys tried to stay true to themselves, and most of the time that’s being portrayed on TV. It’s just amplified.

Have you dated since leaving the mansion?

I haven’t, no. I don’t really rush into things, and obviously, it would be weird if I did so while the show’s still airing, and I’m still in the running — that wouldn’t make any sense. I’ve just thrown myself back into work, so no.

Would you go on Bachelor in Paradise if you’re asked?

I’m still trying to figure out what that’s all about! I don’t really know too much about it. I’ve been hearing bits and pieces — I think it’s just previous contestants getting together? As I said, it was big for me to do this, so to throw myself back into something like that… I don’t know if it would really suit my personality that much. I honestly don’t know [laughs].

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The Bachelor world is already so small! A lot of people have already dated — like you and Laura Byrne.

But you know what? I swear to God that was a complete coincidence. I know it seems like, “Oh yeah, sure it is,” but it was. We’re good friends now, and once we both found out that we both did it, when I got out, we just went, “Holy shit!” We had the biggest crack-up. We could not believe it. It was the funniest thing ever. It obviously worked out really well for her, and she’s met an awesome guy, and I’m so happy for her. It’s been really good in some ways, because she’s been so supportive of me, and can relate to a lot. It’s all good.

What surprised you most about going on the show?

That’s a good question. I think just the dynamics of trying to compete for one woman in a group of guys. I know that’s the whole point of the show, but also, how you’re cut off from everything. I was a bit surprised on how strict that was, but I understand the reasons as to why they do that. That’s probably the biggest surprise. And maybe sometimes the things Jarrod and Blake say [laughs]. I was like, “Did you really just say that?”

How long were you in the mansion for in total?

I think it was about six weeks? Maybe a little bit longer.

Random Instagram question: Why do you turn your quotes into Instagram tiles?

[Laughs] It’s funny. A few people have said that. I get that it kind of comes across as a bit wanky. But the thing is — and I’m passionate about this — I really want to show that I put some thought into what I’m trying to offer to people. So many people just screen-grab a quote, and throw it up there, and get all the credit for it. I honestly think a lot, and I try to capture that, and give value to other people to help them out. It’s not that I want the credit, I just want to show that I’m putting some thought into it, you know what I mean?

I do get it, and to be honest, I felt really awkward doing it as well, but I’m like, bugger it! I want to show people that I’m putting the time into these posts, and there’s not things I’ve just screen-grabbed and thrown up.

Now watch: Sophie Monk’s funniest moments.