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Below Deck Down Under’s Jamie Sayed on Benny Crawley: “He Had Zero Respect for Me”
Thalassa’s bosun opened up about his tension with the deckhand and shared whether he’s still working in yachting today.
This season of Below Deck Down Under is Jamie Sayed’s very first time working as a bosun, and he’s learning how difficult it can be to manage a crew.
In particular, there has been some friction between Jamie and deckhand Benny Crawley. Their conflict really came to a head in recent episodes of Below Deck Down Under as Jamie expressed his frustration with Benny’s performance and attitude, while Benny didn’t feel that Jamie was speaking to him in an appropriate manner.
When The Daily Dish caught up with Jamie in an exclusive interview over the phone earlier this month, he said he actually liked Benny as a person. “Benny, he is a good guy. And he means well. And he’s great to have drinks with, and have fun with, and all that sort of stuff. And a laugh,” Jamie shared. “Like, we would laugh together a lot throughout the season.”
But working with Benny had its challenges, according to Jamie. “Benny as a deckhand, he had been away from yachts for quite some time. He had gone through some trauma with his parents [who passed away six months apart prior to the charter season]. He just came on to have fun. He didn’t come on to… or maybe he forgot that there was a lot of work to be done,” Jamie said. “I feel like he came on to just have a good time and, you know, just see what happens. Whereas there’s a lot of work to be done. There’s so much to be done.”
With everything the deck crew has to juggle before, during, and after a charter — from stocking provisions to setting up beach picnics to constantly keeping the teak clean — Jamie said he wished Benny had been better able to focus on all the tasks at hand. “So really, I would have loved Ben to be in the right mindset and have been on a boat more recently, rather than what he was,” Jamie said. “And then, you know, maybe he would have sort of picked up his game a bit.”
Jamie said he also didn’t feel as if Benny respected him as bosun. “No, Ben had no respect for me whatsoever. If we’re talking about work relation, like Deckhand Ben and Bosun Jamie, he had zero respect. He had zero respect for me from the start. That was a concerning thing. You know, it was just like, well, how do you expect me to handle you here?” Jamie shared. “[Captain Jason Chambers] and Ben were quite close, and that sort of brought my power away, took my power away. But as I said, he’s a good guy. Means well. Great to have drinks with. It’s just a shame that he was in that mindset when he was on deck on that season. ’Cause it just… it wasn’t fair on him to even come on the show. To say that he’d come on for a good time wasn’t fair on the rest of the team, either. That’s not just the deck team, that’s the whole crew.”
In his Instagram Stories, Benny shared his initial thoughts on the most recent episode of Below Deck Down Under, Episode 12, in which his fate with the Thalassa crew is to be determined after the captain hears about what’s been going on between the deckhand and the bosun. “It’s actually quite intense for me to watch,” he said. “It was an intense moment for me in life. Everything’s very real, the emotions are real, the feelings are real. And, you know, it’s just two people in their own head. It’s really interesting to watch, to be honest.”
Jamie has decidedly been getting along better with another deckhand, Brittini Burton, on this season of Below Deck Down Under. But even though the yachties appear to have great chemistry, Jamie said he never thought he and Brittini would be anything more than just friends. “No, there was never, ever any sort of, like, well, let’s just call it sexual tension between us whatsoever,” he said. “Brittini I saw as a little sister who was green on deck, and I was her big brother and training her in how to do the operations of working on a yacht on charter.”
Still, Jamie said he did appreciate the more in-depth conversations he was able to have with Brittini. “We do have, like, a pretty good sort of chemistry,” he shared. “And we can sit there and talk to each other about deep sort of things.”
Jamie’s interactions with Captain Jason were trickier to navigate as the two were at odds at the beginning of this season. “We are trying to achieve the same outcome, but we’re going different ways about it. We want the same goal for everyone — for the crew, for the deck team, and for the charter guests. We do want the same goal. We were on the same path,” Jamie said of his early tension with the Below Deck Down Under boss. “He was on, you know, one side of the path, and I was on the other side of the path. So it was a little bit difficult to sort of mesh and gel our ideas together.”
Things got especially intense between the Thalassa crew members earlier this season when Jamie confronted Captain Jason about the yacht moving too fast while towing the tender. Jamie told The Daily Dish that he didn’t “have any regrets” about bringing the issue to Captain Jason’s attention. “I was very respectful in how I went about it,” he said. “It wasn’t like I just opened the door and just blasted in there.”
Jamie, who has nearly 20 years’ experience working in safety and security jobs, also explained that he voiced his concerns to the rest of the deck crew, not so they would “not listen to Jason,” but because safety was his top priority. “At the end of the day, my goal was let’s get through this season without hurting any of the crew. Like, whether it’s a cut on the foot — let’s fix it, if it can be avoided by wearing shoes, let’s make that happen — or more of the intense operations,” Jamie said, citing larger responsibilities like moving jet skis with a crane, driving the tender, and handling lines. “That’s where s--t can get real. So I just wanted to make sure no one was gonna get injured. So I was very, very hot on that.”
“I just wanted everyone to be safe, and I think that goal was achieved. And at the end of the day, the biggest thing to make sure everyone is safe is prevention. Let’s prevent it before it happens,” he continued. “That’s preparation. If you don’t prepare, you prepare to fail.”
Overall, Jamie said he enjoyed his time filming this season of Below Deck Down Under. “It was actually quite fun filming. I really enjoyed the filming side of things. It was something so different. It was sort of surreal, to be honest,” he recalled. “It was like, you know, you’ve got [this] camera crew following you around. I’m like, what the hell? I had a sound crew miking me up. You sort of feel a little bit special, which is cool. So filming was fun. We got to see and do a lot of cool things.”
Jamie described reliving the charter season while watching the episodes as “interesting” and “a f--king roller coaster ride.”
“I sit there in my bed with my laptop, and I’m literally under the blanket, like, with one eye [open],” he said. “Like, what am I in for today, you know what I mean?”
Dealing with social media commentary can also be difficult, according to Jamie. He said he likes to check in with his fellow Thalassa crew members after the episodes come out just to see how they are feeling.
Following this season of Below Deck Down Under, Jamie started studying for his commercial helicopter license. At the time of this interview, he was also working on a boat in West Palm Beach, Florida, to earn extra cash to complete the course back in his home country of Australia.
“I’m just doing a bunch of temp gigs. So it’s sort of, one boat I’m a bosun, this boat I just jumped on and started the other day. So temp gigs are, like, where you just go and fill in positions where people are on holidays. And you just get your cash up that way. So there might be some possible full-time gigs out in the future on boats. Someone even teased me the other day with being a crew chef for a boat for six months while they’re in the shipyard. And I’m tempted, ’cause I love to cook. It’s one of my passions,” Jamie said, adding that he once filled in for a sous chef for three weeks on a 90-meter boat with 30 crew members. “I’m just basically jumping around boat to boat to boat. Gaining cash, like we do as yachties. I’ll eventually head back over to Australia and complete that license.”
Below Deck Down Under is streaming now on Peacock with new episodes every Thursday.
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