Who is Mike Bushell? Strictly Come Dancing 2019 contestant and BBC Breakfast host

Sports presenter Mike Bushell has tried out 500 different sports, but his viral swimming pool gaffe shows he's prone to a slip-up

A man more familiar with the footie scores than the ones dished out by Craig Revel Horwood, Mike Bushell’s Strictly Come Dancing 2019 casting has been confirmed.

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The BBC Sport presenter is swapping the BBC Breakfast studio for the ballroom, where he’ll be competing to lift the glitterball trophy – and hopefully not star in another viral video after a clumsy fall.

But who exactly is the latest Strictly Come Dancing contestant? And can you relive that fantastic moment he slipped in a swimming pool on live TV below? (Spoiler: abso-splashing-lutely)

Here’s everything you need to know ahead of Strictly Come Dancing’s return.


Who is Mike Bushell?

Now known as a Sports journalist for the BBC, Bushell actually aimed to become an entertainer as a youngster and studied drama at university.

At university, Bushell had one dance lesson – which resulted in him putting his teacher in A&E.

While trying to make ends meet as an actor, Bushell got a job on a local Winchester newspaper.

Interestingly, it’s around this point he competed on BBC game show It’s A Knockout, his Winchester team finishing bottom of their heat.

In his youth, he also once ran 175 miles in 6 days, from Yorkshire to Hertfordshire, to raise money for charity.

Key Facts

Age: 53

Twitter: @mikebreakfast

Instagram: @bbcbreakfast_mikebushell

Who is Mike Bushell’s professional partner? Katya Jones

Although taking a break to tour as a lead singer in rock group Don’t Push the River, Bushell pursued journalism and joined the BBC in 1990 as a trainee reporter. He then became a presenter on BBC South Today before joining the BBC News channel and later BBC Breakfast.

It’s here where Bushell pulled off one of the most memorable feats of his life. No, not trying out over 500 different sports and activities during his Saturday morning slot, but falling into a swimming pool.

While interviewing a swimming team during the 2018 Commonwealth games on the Gold Coast of Australia, Bushell slipped into the water, leaving the athletes in tears with laughter.

Which other BBC Breakfast stars have competed on Strictly?

As you’ve probably noticed, Bushell won’t be the first Breakfast presenter to try their luck on the dance floor. In fact, Strictly’s first-ever winner, Natasha Kaplinsky, was presenting Breakfast while competing.

Other hosts to appear on Strictly include Kate Silverton (who made it to Blackpool in 2018), sports correspondent Chris Hollins (who won in 2009), Susanna Reid (finished as runner-up in 2013), Carol Kirkwood (finished 10th in 2015) and Naga Munchetty (who survived until week four in the 2016 series).

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