janette-manrara

Strictly Come Dancing fans puzzled by Janette Manrara's mysterious absence

The popular pro dancer was missing from Sunday's group dance

Gemma Strong

The Strictly stars once again wowed viewers with a spectacular group dance on Sunday's show. But one popular pro was missing from the line-up. While the rest of the dancers performed to an Elton John medley during the opening of the show, Janette Manrara was noticeably absent – and fans quickly took to Twitter to discuss why. Janette's husband, Aljaz Skorjanec, took the lead in the group dance, along with Oti Mabuse. But fans couldn't understand why Janette wasn't dancing too. "If anyone was meant to dance to Tiny Dancer it's @JManrara," one wrote. "I always think of her when I hear that song! Where was she?" A second joked, "Really curious where @JManrara was tonight. Is she injured or has she and @WillBayleytt decided to go out for dinner/drinks (maybe not dancing until he's better?" A third added: "There was talk of an injury last week, maybe she's still having trouble – hope she's OK!"

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It's been a tough week for Janette and her partner Will Bayley. The pair were forced to withdraw from the competition after Will sustained a knee injury during rehearsals. In a statement released last week, the paralympian confirmed: "I'm gutted my Strictly journey has had to come to an end. I've loved being part of the show, and am so grateful for the phenomenal support we have received. I want to say a special thank you to Janette for believing in me and giving me the confidence to believe in myself. The things we achieved, from our Couple's Choice dance through to the lifts in our Salsa, will stay with me forever. I've had the time of my life." American dancer Janette added: "Absolutely devastated that Will and I will not be able to continue dancing. We made some incredible memories that I will never forget, and I am pleased to have shared them with such an inspirational person, whom I can now call a friend for life."

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Janette and Will were both seen in the audience during Saturday's live show, with Janette appearing incredibly emotional as Will spoke to Tess Daly about their untimely exit. Describing Janette as his "rock", Will added: "I am so gutted but it's so good to be here to support everyone, they're all smashing it tonight. I feel like I've had the most support throughout this whole process, the least I can do is come back and I'm proud to watch you guys."

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