Following her surprise exit from Dancing on Ice on Sunday night, Rebekah Vardy paid an emotional tribute to her skating partner Andy Buchanan and thanked her fans for their ongoing support during a "difficult" few weeks.
The 39-year-old, who narrowly missed a place in next week's semi-final, was eliminated from the competition following a skate-off with Lady Leshurr.
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Taking to her Instagram page to share a lengthy post, Rebekah stated: "Thank you for everything @dancingonice. To the entire cast & crew, Lawrence, the creatives, Marcos & the H+M team, costume - EVERYONE - from the bottom of my heart thank you. To steal a line from an amazing movie, 'I've had the time of my life.'
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"I've made some new friends for life & been welcomed in by people that I can’t even believe I’ve been lucky enough to perform alongside. You all know who you are."
Turning her attention towards the rapper, the TV star added: "To my girl @imladyleshurr I'm so happy that you're still standing. I'm Still Standing will ALWAYS be our song, I just hope we can dance together to it at a party one day. You are a STAR & I'm so happy that all of the viewers are seeing that. I will always have your back.
The TV star missed out on a place in the semi-final
"To my family & closest friends, I love you all & as much as I've loved training & fallen in love with the ice, I’m also looking forward to having time at home with my family again."
But it was her professional partner, who was particularly praised. "Finally - to @andybuchanan2 Bucharoo - I have loved every single moment of training with you," she said.
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"You are an unbelievable talent, you are kind, patient, caring, supportive, creative and the best partner that I could have wished for. You took my wild child, throw myself at the ice like an excited toddler ways & nurtured me into a capable & confident skater. I was even at the point where I wasn’t terrified of skating on live TV & that is down to you. [sic]
"You boosted my confidence & turned a terrified woman who had never even taken one dance class into a skater who couldn’t wait to perform to the best of my abilities. Any ability that I have is because of you. Can you believe you got a 39-year-old mother of 5 to do the headbanger in a Rachel Green wig. I could never have done that without you. I’m eternally grateful."
She concluded: "To everyone who supported us & voted for us, thank you for keeping us on this amazing show for so long. I’m beyond happy & so grateful to @itv @dancingonice & everyone associated with the show #dancingonice."
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