Last month, it was reported that Tess’s name had cropped up as Craig took aim at various aspects of ‘Strictly’ while promoting his book.
While he admitted that fellow judge Bruno Tonioli had been “driving him nuts” during the show’s current series, he was quoted as saying of Tess: “In those 10 or 20 seconds where I have to answer her quite dull questions actually... I tend to avoid them and not answer if I’m super honest.”
He then added: “If there is anyone here from the press, I did not say that.”
Fortunately, Tess has taken the remarks in her stride, telling HuffPost UK: “He’s just Craig being Craig, he didn’t mean anything malicious by it.
“He’s a pussy cat, he’s a darling in real life. I think it was taken out of context, a lot of it. He’s a sweetie.”
On how she handles the ‘Strictly’ judges while hosting the weekly live shows, Tess continued: “I live for Bruno going off on one of his favourite rants. He’s so great... he’s so extra. And I love when I go and stand next to him live to talk to him because I don’t know what he’s going to say. The judges don’t do the dress rehearsal.
“I think they’re all great, I love them to bits. I have voices from the gallery sometimes shouting in my ear saying ‘time’s up, move it on’.”
“I don’t think it’s appropriate for anyone to make comments about anyone else – be it about their body or anything they do – when working as a team,” she said. “I’m a team player and I have the backs of my fellow people. Yes, I got an apology – a sincere apology.
“I don’t need anybody to make me feel bad about myself. I can do that to myself. To each his own. I don’t think you need to sell anything off the back of making anybody else look small. I don’t think joking about somebody else’s body is funny.”
‘Strictly Come Dancing’ continues on Saturday night with the show’s annual musical theatre-themed special, kicking off at 6.50pm on BBC One.