18/12/2019 12:41 GMT

Michael Barrymore Leaves Dancing On Ice Early Due To Injury

The entertainer broke his wrist during training with partner Alex Murphy.

Michael Barrymore has been forced to quit the upcoming series of Dancing On Ice after breaking his wrist. 

The entertainer had been due to make his big TV comeback as a contestant on the ITV skating show in the new year, but has injured himself during training. 

He will be replaced on the line-up by former Blue Peter presenter Radzi Chinyanganya.

In a statement, Michael said: “Shortly after shooting the Dancing On Ice Christmas Special I took a tumble whilst rehearsing for the January shows. After the fall, I thought I had sprained my wrist but it turns out that it is broken.”

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Michael Barrymore

He continued: “Unfortunately, the medics have told me that I cannot compete. I am absolutely devastated; I have loved every second of the journey so far with my wonderful dance partner Alex Murphy and the support from the public has been overwhelming. 

“I have been fortunate enough to work with such a great bunch of people over the previous few months; trainers, celebrities, pro skaters, the judges, Holly and Phil and the incredible production team at ITV who really are exceptional and help to make it the fantastic show that it is.

“I shall be in the studio for the first show on Sunday 5 January and hope to make other appearances throughout. I would like to wish the whole of Dancing On Ice 2020 the best of luck.”

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Michael and professional partner Alex Murphy

Radzi also said: “I am thrilled and privileged to be part of the Dancing On Ice 2020 cast. I am absolutely gutted for Michael, who is one of my all-time favourite TV presenters, and I wish him a speedy recovery.

“I’ve only got two weeks to get ready to ice skate in front of the nation so I’m looking forward to a Christmas and New Year filled with training on the ice!”

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Radzi Chinyanganya will replace Michael

Michael will still be seen in the upcoming Dancing On Ice Christmas special, which was recorded last week and airs on ITV this Sunday at 7pm.

The festive episode will also see this year’s celebrity skaters take to the ice for the first time, as well as revealing their professional pairings. 

Other stars on the line-up include Love Island star Maura Higgins and former Steps singer Ian “H|” Watkins, who is set to make history by taking part in the show’s first same-sex couple with skater Matt Evers. 

Dancing On Ice returns to ITV on Sunday 5 January.

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