Australia has decided and Marley was chosen as the winner of Big Brother Australia earning $250,000 in prize money, which he said would go towards helping his father, a promise he made to his late mother.
The disability support worker and NBL1 player defeatred fellow finalists Christina Podolyan and Sarah Jane “SJ” Adams in a public vote, as this year’s 26 housemates reunited on stage, and virtually, for the first time since leaving the house, including fan favourites Tilly, Daniel, Mary, Nick, Mel, Carlos and final evictee Ari.
The finale occurred outside of the Big Brother house and was filmed inside the Big Brother studio with host Sonia Kruger acknowledging that the venue was meant to be packed with fans but was forced to be empty due to Covid protocols.
The final three then sat in the hot seat as voting was still going on why they deserved to be the winner of Big Brother 2021.
The contestants were then joined on stage by their families- SJ and her two daughters, Christina and her mother and Marley with his father and brother- before Kruger read out Marley’s name as confetti dropped from the sky and he was embraced by Christina and SJ.
The 26-year-old from Melbourne paid tribute to his late mother Victoria, who passed away from cancer four years ago.
“I wanted to play a truthful and honest game and show everyone in the outside world that doing these things can allow you to succeed in life,” said Marley. “I’m so proud of the game I played, and I know my mum’s proud of it.”
When asked what he’ll do with the prize money, Marley said: “I’m going to take care of dad, whatever he needs, whatever he wants, and set him up for the rest of his life.”
Marley, Christina and SJ survived 63 days in Big Brother’s game, evicting 23 housemates before them to become the final three left standing.
Throughout the season, Marley won three individual and four group challenges, scoring a bonus $10,000 cash prize when he took out the reward challenge in week eight. He was nominated five times for eviction.
The key moment in Marley’s victory came in the penultimate episode of the series after winning the nomination challenge and the power to decide which two housemates to take to the Grand Final and who to send home, torn between using his head and evicting strategically, or going with his heart and staying true to the person he’d been the whole game.
In the end, Marley voted with his heart, saving SJ and Christina and evicting Ari, who walked out of the ceremony without saying goodbye.
Marley is the second winner of Big Brother since the show was rebooted by Seven.