Great Britain

Strictly’s Anton du Beke calls for a second same sex pairing on 2020 show and begs for football player Jason Bell

STRICTLY'S Anton du Beke has called for a second same sex pairing on the 2020 show and begged to dance with American football player Jason Bell.

The 54-year-old dancer appeared on Friday’s edition of Steph’s Packed Lunch on Channel 4 and was asked by host Steph McGovern who he’d like as his celebrity partner this year.

While Nicola Adams will be paired with a female pro for the show's first same-sex coupling, the show's longest serving pro said: “They’re a great bunch. I’ll tell you one I’m quite excited about, Jason Bell, the American Footballer. He’ll do for me!

"I’m a mad keen - it’s my guilty pleasure really - American Football fan, I love it! I’m excited about him coming on, I can’t wait.”

Anton also revealed how pre-recording all the group numbers has been better for him.

He explained: “Normally, in August we do all the group number rehearsals then we revisit them during the series and we do them on show days.

"They’re pre-recorded just before the show starts then slotted into the live show. But we’ve done them all in advance now."

The pros isolated together in a hotel for four weeks, and Anton added: "We had to bubble altogether in a hotel, all the pros. All the numbers are done and filmed and they’re brilliant.

"It’s marvellous because I say revisit during the series but for me it’s more relearn. I can barely remember my name halfway through a series, let alone a step.”

Asked if the group dances will be better this series, Anton replied: “They’re going to be fantastic. I’m so delighted with them.”

He also revealed that he is going back into the Strictly bubble the week after next.

He said: “Next week, we’re going into a period of isolation, personal isolation, and then we go into the Strictly bubble from that point on.”

Discussing whether he could win the show this year, he said: “Last year, I sort of won. It was a tie. Oti gets a bit funny about that when I mention it. With Kelvin doing a rumba and a samba on the same night, I don’t do rumba and samba in the same year if I can afford it.”

Strictly Come Dancing begins on Saturday, October 24 on BBC One. Steph’s Packed Lunch airs weekdays at 12.30pm on Channel 4.

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