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Strictly's first celebrity leaves as judges divided after dance-off

The BBC dance competition waved goodbye to its first celebrity

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Diane Shipley
Senior Online Writer
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Nina Wadia has become the first celebrity to leave this series of Strictly Come Dancing following the dance-off on Sunday night.

The EastEnders actress took to the dance floor for the second time on Saturday, performing the Tango to Would I Lie To You? by Eurythmics with her partner Neil Jones.

READ: James and Ola Jordan's Strictly verdict: Tom's COVID, Tilly's surprise and their weakest couple prediction

The scores from this weekend and the previous weekend were added together along with the viewers' vote, and Nina and Neil ended up in the bottom two alongside Katie McGlynn and Gorka Marquez, who danced the Jive to Olivia Rodrigo's Good 4 U.

WATCH: Strictly's Gorka Marquez has unexpected surprise for partner Katie McGlynn

Both pairs danced again, impressing the judges with their second performances of the routines.

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Craig Revel Horwood chose to save Katie and Gorka. He said: "Well, both couples clearly upped their game from the first time they danced.

neil jones nina wadia dance off© Photo: BBC

Nina and Neil left the show on Sunday night

"Nina, you got every step right. Katie, you really kept the energy up all the way through to the end with lots of retraction but the couple I’d like to save is Katie and Gorka."

Motsi Mabuse also chose to save Katie and Gorka, saying: "I just found that one couple was just that little bit more convincing so that is why I’m going to go with Katie and Gorka.”

Anton Du Beke, however, chose to save Nina and Neil. He commented: "This is the best you’ve done both dances. The one who upped their game and performed the best I think was Nina and Neil."

Head judge Shirley Ballas had the deciding vote, choosing to save Katie and Gorka, although she called it "one of the closest battles I think we’ve ever had in a dance-off."

nina wadia tango© Photo: BBC

The duo danced the Tango on Saturday

She went on: "Neither couple had mistakes so I’ve decided to go with the couple who had more advanced technical actions in their dance and that couple is Katie and Gorka."

When asked by the show's co-host Tess Daly about their time on the show, Nina said: "It’s been really fun, thank you so much. [Neil] is incredible, thank you."

Paying tribute to his partner, Neil said: "You’ve been a dream. Second partner on the show for me. I wouldn’t have wanted anybody else… It’s been so much fun together, you said you wanted to dance and you’ve done two fantastic dances and I’m really, really, really proud of you."

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