HEATHER Maltman was heartbroken after her elimination on The Bachelor.
Shocked viewers sent social media into overdrive tonight as the fan favourite landed firmly in the "friend zone" with Bachelor Sam Wood.
"I feel relief in terms of just being able to finally say 'yeah he broke my heart' but also sadness in seeing it, you know?" Maltman told APN.
"I've actually had an incredible time even though it's been really difficult having pretty much everyone in Australia thinking he's going to pick me."
Maltman said she did not expect to sent home after introducing Wood to her family.
"We only talked about friend zone stuff at the very beginning and my understanding was we'd completely moved past it," she said.
"When it came up later I was absolutely shocked."
Wood walked Maltman out of the rose ceremony to explain his decision.
"I have been wanting and hoping that what I've felt has been an amazing friendship can become more abut I just don't think it can," he said.
The charismatic aspiring filmmaker and actress, who is originally from Brisbane but now lives in Sydney, won viewers over with her quirky personality and humorous insights into the reality dating show.
She had an instant chemistry with Wood, receiving the coveted white rose after their first meeting. She then won a legion of fans for planning a superhero-themed date with Wood.
"Holy hell, I've never felt so humbled in my life to have so many nice things said about me," she said.
When the show finishes next week, Maltman will finally be able to move on with her own love life.
"In the time I finished filming and the show went to air, there was a period where I let it go and I did attempt to start dating," she said.
"I was interested in a guy for a little bit, but it just wasn't right. Then when the show started airing, everyone thought I had a boyfriend so I was like 'OK let's run with that for a while'."
Resilient Maltman has been able to maintain her humour through her heartbreak.
"Anyone who has been friend zoned and lived in the friend zone, hi I'm happy to be here," she said.
"Where are the crackers and dips? Is there a fridge? Where do I put my beer?"
She was also full of praise for the three remaining finalists: Sarah, Snezana and Lana.
"I love all three of those girls equally," she said.
"They've all got their own enigmatic, special quality. I do feel like Sarah is my spirit animal, so I want him to want to be with her because she's an incredible human being.
"If he doesn't end up choosing her, well then she better look out because she's an incredible catch."
The final two episodes of The Bachelor air next week.
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