• Tue. Jun 28th, 2022

Strictly Come Dancing ‘lining up Italian winner to replace Aljaz Skorjanec

Apr 20, 2022

Strictly: Sara Davies and Aljaz Skorjanec are voted off the show

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Strictly Come Dancing star Aljaz Škorjanec revealed that he was stepping away from the long-running BBC dance competition after nine years. Since then, he has received an outpour of praise and admiration from fans and colleagues, with many wondering what he will do with his newfound downtime. BBC Bosses have potentially teased who might be taking his coveted spot on the dancefloor. 

Aljaz’s announcement came as the second blow to the popular dance competition, with former winner Oti Mabuse revealing her withdrawal in February.

With the new seasons landing on BBC later this year, the show needs to find a replacement for the Aljaz.

Last year the 32-year-old danced up a storm with Dragons’ Den’s Sara Davis, and despite being a fan favourite, they were the seventh pair to be voted out of the show.

He leaves big shoes as when the star danced onto the show in 2013, he won the Glitterball Trophy alongside celebrity model Abbey Clancy.

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However, as reported by The Mirror, an international Strictly dancing star could be joining the show.

A source told the publication that Ireland’s Dancing with the Stars professional Pasquale La Rocca could be making the short trip overseas to appear in the show.

The source said: “Strictly bosses have drawn up a wishlist and would love Pasquale as long as they could prise him away from the Irish show. He is super-talented and an exciting prospect.”

Express.co.uk have reached out to Strictly Come Dancing for comment.

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A post shared by Aljaž Škorjanec (@aljazskorjanec)

Italian dancer Pasquale is no stranger to the competition, having previously held the Glitterball trophy twice in Ireland and once in the Belgium version of the contest.

Pasquale has said in the past: “When you are part of the DWTS market around the world, of course you are seen and spotted by other countries. You have to leave and go to another place.

“I don’t know what is going to happen. But I’m a big fan of the Dancing With The Stars franchise. I haven’t stopped moving since I started in 2019, and I will keep going.”

He wouldn’t be the first dancer to move from the Irish show.

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Kai Widdrington, who made his first appearance on Strictly Come Dancing last year, danced with presenter AJ Odudu. 

Aljaz’s wife Janette Manrara also stepped down from the show in 2021 and became the host of the spin-off show Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two.

Dancers currently confirmed for the show’s next outing are Dianne Buswell, Graziano Di Prima, Amy Dowden, Karen Hauer, Neil Jones, Cameron Lombard, Gorka Marquez, Giovanni Pernice, Jowita Przystal, Johannes Radebe, Kai Widdrington and Nancy Xu.

It is unclear if Anton Du Beke will stay as a judge or go back to dancing.

Posting a grid of images and a heartfelt comment on March 28 with his 545,000 followers, Aljaz said: “On a beautiful sunny day in May 2013 one phone call changed my life forever!

“It went like this… we would like to offer you a position on @bbcstrictly as a professional dancer.

“A dream became a reality, and it was the biggest opportunity for a 23 year old boy from Slovenia.

“It didn’t matter how many beautiful ballrooms I performed in during my competitive career, stepping onto the sacred Strictly floor was the most nervous I had ever been.”

Strictly Come Dancing will return to BBC One later this year.

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