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Strictly's tenth celebrity eliminated on Sunday after 'immense' dance-off

We're at the semis!

strictly logo© Photo: BBC
Ahad Sanwari
Ahad Sanwari - New York
Senior WriterNew York
December 5, 2021
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The latest episode of Strictly Come Dancing saw the departure of its tenth pair right before the semi-finals as TV presenter Dan Walker was eliminated from the Ballroom.

MORE: Ola & James Jordan's Strictly verdict: Rose's terrifying lift, John's mistake and AJ's connection with Kai

After scoring a 31 in the quarter-finals, Dan and his partner, Nadiya Bychkova were up against AJ Odudu and her partner Kai Widdrington in the dreaded dance-off, who landed at the bottom of the leaderboard with a 30.

Fans were left divided by AJ and Kai's inclusion in the bottom, especially as many felt they were underscored despite their errors, as one took to Twitter to write: "When AJ does a brilliant dance, she can never get 40, if she does a dance, which is not her best, she is marked harder. She has got all my three votes."

WATCH: Dan Walker celebrates making it through Strictly Come Dancing week nine

Another also said: "Even taking the mistake into account, AJ was still superior to the lovely Dan. Judges again trying to fix the scores!"

After performing their floor routines again and receiving raves from the judges, both Craig Revel Horwood and Motsi Mabuse chose to save AJ and Kai.

MORE: Dan Walker inundated with support after fan's emotional message

Anton sealed the deal by also adding: "It was an immense dance off, congratulations to both of you. You danced brilliantly, but the edge just goes, for me, to AJ and Kai."

dan nadiya elimination© Photo: BBC

Dan Walker and Nadiya Bychkova became the tenth pair eliminated

Having the majority vote meant that Dan was the next contestant eliminated, as even Head Judge Shirley Ballas revealed that she would’ve voted to save AJ.

Upon learning of the verdict, Dan told co-host Tess Daly: "When I go back to the first day when I was asked to dance in front of some glitter balls, at that point, if there had been a fire exit, I'd have just walked away.

MORE: Strictly's AJ Odudu left fighting back tears after dance 'disaster' in quarterfinal

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"But this amazing woman grabbed me by the hand, and brought me out onto this dance floor. I'm not a dancer, but she showed me that I can dance, and that for me, this has been an absolutely incredible experience."

dan nadiya aj kai© Photo: BBC

The TV presenter and his partner danced off against AJ and Kai

Nadiya also had an emotional response, saying: "Like he said, sometimes the right person walks into your life at the right time and that's what happened. You always encourage everyone, you always have time for everyone, it just inspires me to be a better person myself. Thank you."

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