Strictly Come Dancing fans were left utterly shocked earlier this month when Kevin Clifton announced he would not be taking part in the 2020 series as a professional dancer. Known for his big win with now-girlfriend Stacey Dooley, the TV documentary presenter has spoken out on why Kevin really quit the nation’s favourite dance show.
In a statement to his followers, Kevin said he would like to “focus on other areas of his life and career” and felt it was “time to move on” after much success on the show.
But, a BBC insider claimed, “Kevin’s decision came as a real shock to may of those involved in the show”.
“But the fact is he just thinks he’s bigger than it now — even though it’s what put him where he is today,” The Sun reported.
“He’s told people he thinks he’s now a bigger star than the celebrities on the show, and Stacey has been encouraging him to go out on his own too. She thinks they can be a bit of a TV power couple.”
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“Bosses were shocked that somebody who has benefited so much from the show wants to walk away. But fame and fortune has obviously turned his head.
“He’s got a West End deal in place already and that’s going to take up most of his year so there was no persuading him to stay. His mind was made up,” they claimed.
During a conversation with BBC Radio 5 Live, Stacey opened up to host Nihal Arthanayake these suggestions and set the record straight, teasing what’s to come from Kevin.
Stacey replied sarcastically: “Kevin is obviously totally incapable of making decisions for himself, and so I swooped in.
“As if it’s got anything to do with me, what he does for a living.
“I think he’s got things that are lined up that I’ll let him tell people about,” she teased.
“At the start it hurts, but you have to realise it’s completely ‘story time’. There’s not an ounce of truth in what is published.”
“Initially you try and fight, but then you realise you can’t fight every day. I still have the LU2 (Luton area code) in me. I feel myself getting a bit gobby – that’s exactly what they want.
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Kevin also addressed these claims and tweeted: “Well I’m trying to piece the story together from all the ‘sources’ that have said things.
“Although I did kind of say the truth in my statement.”
With Kevin leaving the professional dancer line-up, who is going to replace him?
The BBC announced the main line-up for the 2020 series, and it seems there are no newcomers of yet.
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With six months to go before 15 famous faces take to the dance floor for the first time, the professionals have been revealed.
There are 17 in total, with original and King of Ballroom Anton Du Beke returning once more.
Gorka Marquez has also been mentioned, but fans will have to wait and see whether or not he is partnered with a celebrity, or snubbed like last year to be on standby or a backing dancer.
Strictly Come Dancing returns to BBC this September and Nihal Arthanayake is on BBC Radio 5 Live every Monday-Thursday between 1-4pm.
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