Strictly Come Dancing's Anton Du Beke Addresses Exit Reports

The pro dancer and his partner Emma Barton reached Saturday's final – only his second in 17 series.

Strictly Come Dancing’s Anton Du Beke has dismissed reports he is preparing to quit the show.

A story published by The Sun claimed the professional dancer had spoken with BBC bosses about bowing out of the series “on a high” after reaching this year’s final with EastEnders star Emma Barton.

However, a representative for the star told Hello! that the rumours were “complete nonsense”.

Anton later appeared on ITV’s Lorraine, telling the host: “I can’t leave, ever, never”, adding that the reports were “hilarious.”

Anton Du Beke
Anton Du Beke
Karwai Tang via Getty Images

Anton has been a dancer on Strictly since the very first series in 2004, and is the only remaining original professional.

He scooped his highest scores ever during Saturday night’s grand final, with his and Emma’s three routines racking up 116 points out of a possible 120.

While it was not enough for them to beat eventual winners Kelvin Fletcher and Oti Mabuse to lift the Glitterball Trophy, Anton hailed Emma as “his winner” in a celebratory post on Instagram.

Anton and Emma didn't quite have what it took to lift the Glitterball Trophy
Anton and Emma didn't quite have what it took to lift the Glitterball Trophy
BBC/Guy Levy

“Ah, we came so very close!!!” he wrote.

“What tremendous #StrictlyFinal winners: @kelvin_fletcher & @OtiMabuse danced magnificently - not just last night, but every single week! First class performances for a top class final - congratulations!!!

“Strictly 2019 has been the most wonderful experience, quite simply because of @TheEmmaBarton - my Strictly Queen of Ballroom, my Grand Finalist, my dance partner… my friend. Emma put her heart & soul into every dance, each a pure joy to perform with her. She’s my winner!”

He continued: “Extra special thanks to everyone who voted for us, supported us, and cheered us on along the way!

“Your votes kept us dancing week on week, right to the very end, and have meant the world to us! I so hope you’ve enjoyed our dances as much as we have.

“Huge thanks for all your encouragement, appreciation and kind words, my loves - you’re the best!”

This year marks Anton’s most successful in his 17 series on Strictly.

He has reached the final only once before with newsreader Katie Derham in 2015, but they were eliminated in fourth place.


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