Brendan Cole has opened up about how he thinks Pasha Kovalev has been "really" performing on Strictly Come Dancing for the first time since he won the series with Caroline Flack back in 2014. Writing for his HELLO! column, the former Strictly professional dancer praised the dance, calling it "absolutely beautiful", adding: "She is a great performer and a beautiful dancer." He went on to praise Pasha, explaining: "What I am loving is Pasha this year. It just shows with the right partner, the professional dancers become inspired and really step up. I think this is the first year since Caroline Flack that I've seen him really perform."
Pasha dancing with Ashley
He continued: "They are clearly a credit to each other this series and that was a very moving and excellent dance. The judges were also full of praise and I particularly liked Craig's comments." At the time, judge Craig Revel Horwood was the only one who didn't score the pair a perfect 10, giving the couple an overall score of 39, and said: "I think you are absolutely super incredible. You took flight in it. I would've liked to have seen more breath in it. I would've liked to have seen a little more of that." Bruno Toniolo added: "It was a poignant tribute danced to perfection. Flawless."
Fans were also delighted to see the couple's contemporary dance and took to social media to praise them, with one person writing: "Ugh that contemporary was so so so special. Kudos to the choreographer and of course Ashley and Pasha for doing it justice," while another person added: "Catching up on last night's #Strictly. Ashley & Pasha's beautiful contemporary should have been the first 40 of the series. Stunning."