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Rose Ayling-Ellis reveals secret behind her 'connection' with Strictly partner Giovanni Pernice

The Strictly pair have put in the extra hours with their dances

Strictly Come Dancing stars Rose Ayling-Ellis and Giovanni Pernice have been wowing fans with their incredible dance routines, so it's no wonder they have managed to develop a close bond in recent weeks.

MORE: Strictly's Rose Ayling-Ellis sums up 'partnership' with Giovanni Pernice perfectly

Shortly after news of their involvement in next year's Strictly tour was announced, the EastEnders actress - who is the show's first-ever deaf contestant - opened up about their partnership, and how "communication" has been vital for them.

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WATCH: Rose Ayling-Ellis close to tears on It Takes Two

Asked why their pairing is so special, Rose told Digital Spy: "I think because of our communication, we have to look at each other, and we have to communicate because I can't hear.

READ: Rose Ayling-Ellis and Giovanni Pernice reveal their partnership is 'more than just about dancing'

MORE: Rose Ayling-Ellis and Giovanni Pernice's 'chemistry' melts hearts after hidden mic reveal

"So in the dance, he's literally there every step that I do. Even if I'm doing solos, he's giving me timing, so no matter what we do, we're always looking at each other and we always know what each other's doing and I think that's what makes our connection work. We work."

Professional dancer Giovanni added: "Also in the training room, we both have a sense of humour. We respect each other, and that's the most important thing, I will say. When you respect and you have a sense of humour then everything comes together."

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The pair will perform two routines this weekend

During rehearsals, the soap star often refers to the Italian hunk as a "lizard". When asked why, she replied: "It's a joke that we have. He's very passionate, and really cares. He really likes pushing me to do the best I can do.

"Because he's seen when I do the best, when I don't do it, because I'm being stupid, then the lizard comes out."

Giovanni, 31, then chipped in: "It's not stupid. It's just when you get distracted!" Agreeing, Rose added: "I do get distracted, and because he's seen me do it when I don't do it, then he's like, 'wow'.

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The Strictly stars are on track to making it into the final

"They're like certain dance moves and stuff. He knows that I can do it. I think I'd much rather have a lizard in the rehearsal room than a sloth!"

This week is a big week for the pair as the stars will dance not one routine but two during Saturday night's show. They will perform the Argentine Tango to A Evaristo Carriego by Eduardo Rovira and the Waltz to How Long Will I Love You by Ellie Goulding.

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