Former England cricketer and TV presenter Phil Tufnell became the ninth celebrity to be voted off the seventh series of BBC One’s Strictly Come Dancing.
In week nine of the competition, seven of the remaining eight celebrity contestants and their professional dance partners took to the floor to perform a variety of dances, however, in a dramatic turn of events Long Jumper and Olympic athlete Jade Johnson injured her knee earlier in dress rehearsal. Following doctor’s orders a tearful Jade and her professional partner Ian Waite were out of Saturday's competition.
The combination of the judges' scores and viewers’ votes left Phil and his professional partner Katya Virshilas in the bottom two and facing the dance off with actor Ricky Groves and his professional partner Erin Boag. Phil and Katya then performed their American Smooth to Come Fly With Me and Ricky and Erin performed their Viennese Waltz to Nights In White Satin for a second time for the judges' deciding vote. Making their decision on who to save, the judges said:
Craig Revel Horwood: “Well it's a big old decision actually tonight, only because Phil and Katya did make a big old boo boo and for me I'm saving Ricky and Erin.”
Alesha Dixon: “Based on this dance, the couple that I would like to keep is Phil and Katya.”
Bruno Tonioli: “The couple I would like to save is Phil and Katya.”
Len Goodman: “Well it was a very, very tough call because they both have danced beautifully tonight and both upped their game. However, I've got to go for the one that gave the cleaner and the more precise performance and that's Ricky and Erin.
On tonight’s show Phil and Katya were awarded 31 points for their American Smooth by the judges. When asked if he'd enjoyed his time on the show Phil Tufnell said: Yes I've enjoyed myself immensely, thank you very much. Katya: It was the most amazing experience, it was so amazing to be part of this family and to feel so welcomed and I have the best partner!
While Bruce Forsyth recovers from the flu, Tess Daly took over Bruce’s hosting duties and It Takes Two’s Claudia Winkleman stepped into Tess’s shoes backstage. The pair were joined by special guest star Ronnie Corbett who kept an eye on proceedings throughout the night.
The show also saw the cast of the hit musical The Jersey Boys perform Beggin’, accompanied by a break-dance routine from Boy Blue Entertainment. Strictly’s professional dancers also performed a spectacular Showdance to One Night Only, from the film Dreamgirls, while Kristina Rihanoff and Brian Fortuna performed a special dance to She’s Like The Wind from the film Dirty Dancing in memory of Patrick Swayze.