James Cracknell Dismisses Strictly Come Dancing 'Rant' Reports

The Olympic rower was the first contestant sent home this series.

Eliminated Strictly Come Dancing star James Cracknell has set the record straight over claims he “launched into a furious rant” after being sent home.

James and his professional partner Luba Mushtuk became the first couple axed from the competition over the weekend, with The Sun suggesting he didn’t exactly take the news well.

The tabloid suggested James had a furious outburst behind the scenes after the result and “had to be calmed down”, though the Olympic rower has now insisted this is not the case.

James Cracknell at this year's Strictly launch
James Cracknell at this year's Strictly launch
SOPA Images via Getty Images

He tweeted: “I don’t reply to people’s comments but I’m not gonna let this one go.

“@LubaMushtuk & I had fun & our best dance but it wasn’t enough. I know I’m no John Travolta so to throw my toys out the pram would be stupid @TheSun @bbcstrictly”

If anyone is getting a sense of déjà vu, that’s probably because the exact same tabloid went with a near-identical story after the first Strictly elimination in 2018, leading to a very similar statement from the contestant in question.

This time last year, when it was suggested she’d thrown a “tantrum” after being shown the door, Susannah Constantine shared a screengrab of the headlines on Instagram, alongside the caption: “Bollocks, bollocks and more bollocks.”

Following the first elimination, 14 couples remain in the competition, with next week’s live show having a Movies theme.

The full list of songs and dances is yet to be revealed, but it’s already been teased that Anneka Rice will be channeling Uma Thurman in Kill Bill, Michelle Visage will be giving us her best – in her words – “Liza with a Z” and Dev Griffin will be transformed into Will Smith in Aladdin for the first Couple’s Choice routine of the series.

Strictly Come Dancing returns on Saturday at 7.10pm on BBC One.

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