Anita Rani leaves Strictly Come Dancing 2015 in semi-final: “I can’t believe I managed to get this far”

The Countryfile presenter narrowly missed out on a place in the series' Grand Final, after facing Katie Derham in the dreaded dance-off

Anita Rani has narrowly missed out on a place in next Saturday’s Strictly Grand Final, becoming the eleventh celebrity to leave the competition. 

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Anita and professional dancer Gleb Savchanko faced Katie Derham and Anton du Beke in the dreaded dance-off during tonight’s Results Show. Both couples performed their second dances for another time before Anita was voted out of the competition. 

“I came to Strictly having never danced before and I love this programme and thought let’s give it a go. Little did I know just how difficult it is and how wonderful it is!” Anita said after finding out her fate. “I’ve had the most incredible time. This man is a slave driver, he’s beautiful but he’s also got the most creative mind. Honestly I’ve just had the best time. Thank you to all the judges, everything you say, you’re brilliant. And to all my amazing friends and all four of you, I can’t wait to watch the final. You are all sensational dancers and I can’t believe I have managed to get this far with the calibre of dancing, you are all incredible!”

“I just want to say thank you for this amazing time. The past 12 weeks have been absolutely incredible. I’ve loved every day spent with you, teaching you, creating with you. I’ve learnt a lot, you’ve been so fearless and driven, you want to learn and I couldn’t have wished for a better partner hands down,” added Gleb. 

The decision to send Anita home had been a tough one for the judges, who couldn’t come to a unanimous decision after the dance-off.

This couple are dramatic, dynamic and risk takers and that couple is Anita and Gleb,” said Craig, when asked for his verdict. Bruno and Darcey voted to save Katie and Anton so head judge Len Goodman was called in to have the deciding vote. 

“I’m just judging this on this one dance,” he said. “Nothing that’s been, nothing that could be in the future or in the final, on this one dance. It was totally clear, Katie and Anton.” 

Katie Derham had been bottom of the leaderboard, after being awarded a disappointing 25 for her Charleston in the first half of the semi-final, while Anita had impressed fans with a surprising Salsa. But Katie managed to turn it around during the dance-off. “All errors have been erased from my memory,” said Bruno. 

Want to watch Anita’s Salsa once more? 

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Strictly Come Dancing: the Grand Final is airs next Saturday from 6:35pm on BBC1