Sacked Apprentice Sophie Lau plans to bounce back

Sophie Lau was fired in this week's Apprentice. Picture: PA
Sophie Lau was fired in this week's Apprentice. Picture: PA
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SHE may have heard the dreaded words – but Apprentice-hopeful Sophie Lau insists being sacked by Alan Sugar won’t stop her sinking her teeth in to a new venture.

Edinburgh University graduate Sophie aims to bounce back with an innovative twist on speed-dating for singletons.

The Malaysia-born 22-year-old was fired by Lord Sugar following a disastrous furniture design challenge on Tuesday night’s show. Her boast that her biggest strength was “thinking outside the box” came back to bite her when her team’s chair design was branded “a box on wheels”.

Sophie – who spent four years in the Capital studying economics with management science – said: “Obviously, I’m gutted to have left so early, especially as I don’t think I was the reason we failed the task – it was the design that let us down.

“I admit I probably should have spoken out a bit more, but I’m very ­disappointed not to have had the chance to prove myself, I really wanted to win. I’m so glad that I got as far as I did, though, and I’ve been really happy with how the ­public have responded to me.

“I’ve had lots of messages from people saying they didn’t think I deserved to go.”

Restaurant owner Sophie now plans to bring “speed plating” to the table of those looking for love. Her venture will hit London this summer, and she hopes to bring it to Edinburgh by the end of the year.

She explained: “It’s a speed-dating night for people who love trying out new dishes and wines, but maybe don’t have anyone to share them with. With Speed Plating they get to meet eight new people over eight different courses. I’ve already tried it out in my own restaurant in Bristol and I’m hoping to officially launch it in London in the summer.

“I love Edinburgh so much, I had four amazing years there at university so it’s definitely next on my list for Speed ­Plating, and I’ll hopefully have something up and running by the end of the year.”

Sophie and team-mates Uzma Yakoob and project manager Natalie Panayi had to face Lord Sugar’s fury after they lost their flat-pack furniture design challenge by 3216 sales to just 174.

She said: “Uzma and Natalie were just constantly bickering with each other. That’s really not my style, but I think it hurt me in the boardroom. Lord Sugar is exactly as you’d expect him to be to be – he’s a very intimidating ­businessman.”