Strictly's Shirley Ballas Hits Back At Fleur East 'Feud' Reports: 'It's A Load Of Rubbish'

"I'm going to repeat the word rubbish."
Shirley Ballas
Shirley Ballas
Guy Levy/BBC via PA Media

Strictly Come Dancing judge Shirley Ballas has hit back at claims there’s anything personal behind her scores on this year’s series.

Throughout the current run of Strictly, the judges’ comments have been called into question by some viewers, with many suggesting that Shirley has been especially hard on Fleur East, prompting some to speculate there may be something of a “feud” brewing.

However, the Head Judge has now branded these claims “a load of rubbish” during an interview with The Sun.

“I want to say to people out there, who think that I have a feud with everybody – it’s a load of rubbish,” she said. “I’m going to repeat the word rubbish.”

Fleur East
Fleur East
Ray Burmiston via PA Media

Shirley went on to praise Fleur’s performance during the latest Strictly live show, which saw the former X Factor finalist landing a near-perfect score for her Samba routine.

“What I love about Fleur is you could see talent from the beginning,” Shirley insisted.

“I’ve known the competitive boys and girls on the show for so many years and when I give constructive feedback they’re making notes and taking it on board – and look at that Samba she did.

“I have never, in 20 years of watching Dancing With The Stars or Strictly, seen a Samba like that lady did. She’s just put herself in the running.”

Fleur East performing her Samba routine last week
Fleur East performing her Samba routine last week
Guy Levy/BBC via PA Media

“You can’t just be all fluff and roses, ‘oh, you’re all fabulous’…,” Shirley insisted. “It doesn’t really matter what I do or who I send home, it’s going to upset somebody.”

Shirley has been open about the online abuse she’s suffered from disgruntled Strictly viewers in recent history.

“I love that they have an opinion but then it goes overboard and it’s not nice,” the Queen of Latin told the Loose Women panel last month.

She continued: “I do read everything – I know people say don’t read it but I think it’s quite important. I like to think I’ve helped so many people who have had mental health issues over the years.

“Some of the language is so explicit I couldn’t even retweet it, it’s unfathomable.”

Strictly Come Dancing continues on Saturday at 7.45pm on BBC One.


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