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Strictly's Karen Hauer disagrees with Shirley Ballas' criticism of Jamie Laing

The pro thought Laing's musicality was "right on point".

Strictly Come Dancing's Karen Hauer and Jamie Laing
Published: Wednesday, 2nd December 2020 at 11:44 am

Reverend Richard Coles became the second celebrity to leave Strictly Come Dancing on Sunday night after the judges were unanimous in their decision to save Simon Rimmer in the dance off.


Rev Richard and his partner Dianne Buswell became the second couple to be eliminated from Strictly during Movie Week, following Chizzy Akudolu's exit last Sunday.

A sci-fi themed dance off took place during Strictly's results show after it was revealed that the judges' scores combined with viewers' votes landed the vicar and the chef in the bottom two couples.

Simon Rimmer and Richard Coles in Strictly Come Dancing 2017

Simon and Karen Clifton again performed their Quickstep to You’ve Got a Friend in Me from Toy Story and Richard and Dianne performed their rather memorable Paso Doble to Flash Gordon from the movie Flash Gordon.

Craig Revel Horwood said: "I love the entertainment value of one couple, I really have to save the couple that are technically better and that’s Simon and Karen."

Darcey Bussell added: "This is always incredibly difficult because they both made improvements to their dance but the couple I would like to save, just for a better technical dance, is Simon and Karen."

Richard Coles on Strictly Come Dancing 2017

Bruno described Simon and Karen's performance as being "more cohesive" and also opted to save the Sunday Brunch host. Head Judge Shirley Ballas also agreed with the other three judges.

After being eliminated, Richard described his Strictly experience as "a joy", although added: "I only forgot to reckon into my strategy that I can’t actually dance!"

When asked by presenter Tess Daly what his highlight had been, Richard said: "So many highlights, I think really it’s coming together as a group of people, fellow celebs and pro dancers.

"It has just been a really really wonderful experience. And also it’s really important that none of this would have happened if it wasn’t for the fantastic crew, wardrobe, hair and make-up, production, the fantastic band and the judges too.”

Movie Week proved to be somewhat eventful after Brendan Cole and judge Shirley came to blows over his Tango performance with Charlotte Hawkins.

 There was undeniable friction between the Head Judge and seasoned pro dancer after Shirley criticised Charlotte for displaying too much “rise and fall” in the dance.

But Brendan hit back: “There was no rise and fall”, to which Shirley suggested that he play the routine back again. He then retorted “I will, dear, I will”.

Brendan, who had a rant earlier in the week about judges’ comments aimed at himself and Charlotte, was then told by Bruno Tonioli that his comments were “disrespectful”. Yikes.

Karen Hauer, Jamie Laing's Strictly Come Dancing professional partner, has defended him against criticism from Head Judge Shirley Ballas.

The couple ended up in the bottom two following their Tango performance to Tanguera by Sexeto Major last weekend.

Though the pair were ultimately saved by the judges on Sunday's dance-off – making Radio 1 DJ Clara Amfo the fifth celebrity to exit this series – Ballas maintained that she wanted to see more "musicality" from the Made in Chelsea star.

Speaking on Strictly spin-off show It Takes Two, Hauer said: "Funnily enough, I thought his musicality was right on point.

"Maybe she wanted him to elongate a bit more but... if he wasn't in on his music, I wasn't in on my music."

Even Jamie seemed surprised at his partner's comments, especially after she added: "So, isn't [Shirley] giving me a note?"

Whether the note was intended for Jamie or the pro herself remains unclear, but musicality is surely going to be important for this week's Musicals theme ahead of the final on 19th December.

Karen and Jamie will be hoping to top the Strictly leaderboard with a jive to Everybody's Talking About Jamie, from the musical of the same name.


Strictly Come Dancing continues on Saturday 5th December at 7:15pm. Check out what else is on with our TV Guide, or take a look at our new TV shows 2020 page to find out what's airing this autumn and beyond.


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