SAS Australia's Ant Middleton opens up in a rare emotional interview

"There was one moment when I was at a funeral burying a friend that had died. I was that drunk I was asking where he was."

Ant Middleton may be known as the tough-talking, take-no-prisoners DS Chief Inspector on SAS Australia, but he's recently shown his more vulnerable side, opening up in a rare emotional interview.

From the last time he cried, to the shocking moment that made him cut back on alcohol, Ant also credited his wife of 19 years Emilie for getting him through some of the tougher times in life.

Speaking on The Matt Haycox Show podcast Ant spoke candidly about his time in the military, his time in prison, the cultural problem military has with drinking, and while he's normally known for making recruits cry on SAS, he also opened up about the the last time he shed a tear.

'I've been very selfish'

SAS Australia's Ant Middleton with the 2023 recruits
SAS Australia's Ant Middleton. Photo: Seven

“My wife has been incredibly supportive. Through my life and career choices, I’ve been very, very selfish," Ant admitted.

"I look back on my priorities and they were all wrong. My priorities were the military and my mates."

He then went on to talk about his time in prison, where he served four months after assaulting two police officers in 2013 outside of a nightclub. He was initially sentenced to 14 months before being released on good behaviour.


"When I went to prison, and when I came out, the military wasn't there. My mates weren’t there. The only person that was there as the one common denominator through the majority of my life, was my wife now for 19 years, Emilie," Ant confessed. "She was the constant. She’s the backbone of the family. She holds the fort."

'You're damaging yourself'

Ant Middleton pictured on the set of SAS Australia
Ant Middleton pictured on the set of SAS. Photo:

Ant also opened up about the drinking culture within the military, saying the moment he cut back on alcohol was after losing a friend.

"There was one moment when I was at a funeral burying a friend that had died. I was that drunk I was asking where he was. I didn’t even realise that I was at his funeral," Ant said.

"That moment was such a reality check that the alcohol had started to take charge here... so that’s when I knew from then on I had to cut back on alcohol."

'I was an emotional wreck'

Ant said he last shed a tear in 2022, after climbing the world's second highest mountain K2.

"I was probably halfway up and it’s so steep. A woman was coming down the other way and she stopped, while we unclipped to let her pass. It’s common courtesy to do so, and she sat down on one knee because it’s so steep. On my stomach I had my wife and children’s names written on there, so I could look down at them.

She looked at me and said ‘it’s beautiful up there, and you’re almost there’. She looked at my stomach and read their [his family's] names out perfectly. She said ‘they’ll be extremely proud of you when you stand on that summit’," he shared.

"She didn’t have to stop and say that, but I was an emotional wreck. I just sunk onto my knees for a second and started crying, because I thought wow, she doesn’t know how much I’m suffering right now. I cried for about five seconds as a release, stood up, took a deep breath and cracked on up the mountain. That was the last time I shed a tear."

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