Nadiya Bychkova defends ‘shocked’ reaction after Dan Walker avoided Strictly exit ‘No way’

Strictly win was an 'anticlimax' says Bill Bailey

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Nadiya Bychkova appeared gobsmacked after Dan Walker, who had performed his “sweet street dance” routine the night prior, was saved from being eliminated.

The Ukrainian professional dancer wasn’t the only one who was startled by the announcement though, as fans on social media had shared similar views.

Please watch her face when you got through to next week

Janette Manrara

In fact, many believed that the Sheffield-based sports presenter should have been sent home at the time.

During an appearance on Strictly: It Takes Two, however, Nadiya responded to the criticism from social media users over her stunned facial impression as she and Dan made it through to another week.

TV presenter Janette Manrara was quick to get to the bottom of things, asking the 32-year-old why she was in such disbelief after hearing her and Dan’s name called out during the results show.

“There was one person who was more shocked than anyone to see you go through this week and that person was your professional dance partner Nadiya Bychkova”, the TV presenter told Dan.

“Please watch her face when you got through to next week.”

Janette then started to lip-read what Nadiya had said to Dan: “What? Oh, no way!”

Nadiya, who joined the BBC One show in 2017, was quick to chime in, stressing that her reaction was “more excitement” than shock.

She insisted that throughout Dan’s journey on Strictly, she has thoroughly enjoyed dancing with him every single week.

And although some viewers were convinced that the 44-year-old would be going home, his popularity with fans was sure to prove otherwise.

“I absolutely love dancing with Dan and I love teaching him and the fun we have at rehearsals is, I’m having the time of my life to be honest this year and he’s so inspiring to so many people out there this year,” Nadiya expressed.

“The amount of messages we are getting from people like ‘I’ve never danced before’, or the wedding guy who said, ‘I’ve never danced before but after seeing Dan dressed as a lobster, I really want to go and try how I will be on the dance floor,’ and he went and he enjoyed the whole night.”

The Strictly contestants are taking on Musicals Week this weekend, with Dan and Nadiya set to dance the Charleston to Good Morning from Singin’ In The Rain.

Rehearsals for their performance hadn’t been going all that great, however, as Dan took to Twitter earlier this week, revealing he had been “kicked in the head” by his dance partner.

The pair had been practising their energetic dance, which involves plenty of flailing legs and arms, when the incident occurred.

But Dan remained in good spirits as he went on to tell his followers he was enjoying learning from his Charleston choreographers: “It was a great laugh learning from Jenny and Sean.

“Looking forward to the weekend,” he concluded.

On Sunday evening, Sara Davies became the latest celeb to be eliminated from the competition with her partner Aljaž Škorjanec.

She’d found herself in the bottom two with Nikita Kuzmin and his dancing partner Tilly Ramsay, who recalled how “terrifying” it felt to be the opening act on last Saturday’s show.

“It was terrifying, just opening the show was so scary, then trying to come back from the fight of the dance-off,” Tilly told Janette on It Takes Two.

“I think I did let it get the better of me a little bit in that dance when I fell out of sync with Nikita and I just thought, ‘Uh oh, that wasn’t right’.”

Strictly Come Dancing continues tonight at 6.35pm on BBC One.

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