Strictly’s Graeme Swann denies feud with Ashley Roberts

After he was eliminated in Week 10 of Strictly, Graeme Swann was thought to have taken a “swipe” at Ashley Roberts’ dance experience – something he has now dismissed

Oti Mabuse, Graeme Swann, Strictly (BBC, EH)

This year’s helping of Strictly Come Dancing has not been without controversy – with Seann Walsh’s drunken kiss with dance partner Katya Jones, and Danny John-Jules’ apparent row with partner Amy Dowden taking up many column inches.


The age-old argument of ‘how good is too good for Strictly?’ has also reared its ugly head again, with many thinking Pussycat Doll star Ashley Roberts was too highly-trained to be a contestant in this year’s series.

It’s a sentiment that some fans thought cricketer Graeme Swann shared after he was given the boot alongside partner Oti Mabuse in week 10 of the competition, when he was in the dance off alongside Roberts and her partner Pasha Kovalev.

Upon hearing the news he was no longer part of the competition, Swann, 39, said, “Secretly I’ve had 25 years of ballroom experience but I kept that to myself! No, I was a novice coming in to this,” – which many considered to be a jibe at Roberts’ previous experience.

He then added on sister show It Takes Two, “I thought I could beat anyone in a dance off… before they said Ashley and Pasha. I turned to Oti and said, ‘She’s going to have to fall over’.

“She said, ‘No, she’s going to have to fall over twice for us to beat her’.”


However, Swann has now hit back at those who thought he may have been holding a grudge against Roberts, dismissing it as “rubbish.”

“I rubbished that, I said don’t read the title or headlines. I didn’t say anything to anyone, it was a joke,” he said to the Metro.

“”Unfortunately, people like to sell papers and make up headlines. It’s the way of the world, if only people were happy instead of trying to pick fights. There certainly isn’t any animosity between me and anyone.”

Ashley Roberts Strictly

Roberts will now face Stacey Dooley, Joe Sugg, Lauren Steadman and Faye Tozer to take the famous Glitterball trophy.

This week’s semi-finals will see the celeb’s tackle two dances to try and win a place in the grand final next Saturday.

The show will also be making history with Little Mix performing with an all-female dance troupe.


Strictly Come Dancing continues tonight at 6:35pm on BBC One.

Sign up to the email newsletter