Strictly Come Dancing's Oti Mabuse Admits Fears She'd Be Axed From This Year's Series

Oti's celebrity partner Jamie Laing was forced to leave the show due to an injury, leaving the dancer worried she'd be out of the running before the new series had even begun.

Strictly Come Dancing professional Oti Mabuse has admitted she feared she would be axed from this year’s line-up after her celebrity partner Jamie Laing was forced to step down from the show due to an injury.

Oti and Jamie found out they’d been partnered together in this year’s pre-recorded Strictly launch, but moments later, the Made In Chelsea star injured his foot after an unfortunate accident in the group dance.

In an interview with Radio Times about the accident, Oti revealed she was feeling “devastated” for Jamie, but also not great for herself, as she feared that she’d end up one of the professionals on the bench for this year’s series.

Oti at this year's Strictly launch
Oti at this year's Strictly launch

She said: “I was devastated when Jamie hurt himself and I had a long, tearful conversation with him.

“For a while I thought I had no partner and I was in bed all day thinking, ‘I can’t do the show!’. In moments like that you realise how much you love something.I was feeling really bad, but one of the producers said, ‘We’ll see what we can do’.”

Jamie Laing
Jamie Laing
Lia Toby via Getty Images

Fortunately for Oti, producers were able to rope in a last-minute replacement for Jamie in the form of former soap actor Kelvin Fletcher.

Kelvin previously said of their partnership: “I couldn’t believe I’d been lucky enough to get Oti. She’s my favourite. It’s brilliant. I’m so happy.”

Kelvin is getting ready to make his Strictly debut
Kelvin is getting ready to make his Strictly debut
PA Media: Entertainment

While Oti will be competing in this year’s series, Strictly pros Gorka Marquez and Graziano Di Prima will not be partnered with celebrities this year, nor will new addition Nancy Xu.

This year also marks the first time that Neil Jones, Johannes Radebe and Luba Mushtuk have been given celebrity partners.

The Sun recently suggested that Jamie Laing would be given the opportunity to return for next year’s Strictly, though this is yet to be confirmed by the BBC.

Read Oti’s full interview in this week’s Radio Times.

Reality TV Walk-Outs