It may be nine years since Darren Bennett and his wife Lilia Kopylova last appeared on Strictly Come Dancing, but that hasn't stopped the couple from showing their support to the current stars. Darren, who won the second series with Jill Halfpenny in 2004, took to Instagram over the weekend to reveal that their three-year-old daughter Valentina is a huge fan of Ashley Roberts and Pasha Kovalev. Following the pair's incredible routine during Movie Week, the father-and-daughter duo recreated the famous Dirty Dancing pose.
Strictly champion Darren Bennett recreated the Dirty Dancing pose with his daughter
"Just finished watching @bbcstrictly #strictlycomedancing and Valentina wanted to do the #dirtydancing lift… Valentina is obsessed with @iamashleyroberts and Pasha." Clearly impressed with Valentina's dancing ability, head judge Shirley Ballas wrote: "Yes. She nailed it. Tell her auntie shirley is proud." To which, Darren replied: "@shirleyballas you would be proud of Valentina’s Jive kick as well!" After seeing the cute post, Ashley also shared her delight, saying: "Ahh!! This is amazing!!!"
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Former Strictly champions Darren and Lilia are one of the most successful male and female professionals in the history of BBC show, having starred in six series and winning seven trophies between them. The couple, who have been married for nearly 19 years, have since gone on to work on spin-off shows across the globe. Lilia, 40, became head judge on the Turkish version Yok Böyle Dans and Darren as head judge on the Lebanese version. Opening up about life away from the dancefloor, Darren previously told The Guardian: "Still, after 12 years of dancing together, we've cracked a policy about work: as soon as the shoes come off, we leave the studio and go for dinner."
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Darren and his wife Lilia Kopylova left Strictly in 2009
He added: "People often ask what it's like being married to your dance partner. Well, you get home at night and, because you've both experienced the same things all day, you've got nothing to talk about ... That's one of the great things about Strictly Come Dancing, because Lilia will go off for the day and see to her celebrity while I see to mine, and then we sit down in the evening and can actually ask, 'What have you done today, dear?'"
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