Strictly Come Dancing star admits ‘body went numb’ over dreaded dance-off surprise

Strictly: Rhys Stephenson says he went ‘numb’ before dance-off

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After failing to impress the judges with his Rumba, Ugo Monye and Oti Mabuse found themselves in the bottom two with Rhys Stephenson and his professional dance partner Nancy Xu. The Strictly Come Dancing judges sent Ugo packing but Rhy has admitted he didn’t expect to be in the dance-off after scoring 32 points for their American Smooth to I’ve Got The World On a String by Michael Bublé.

Speaking to Gary Davies on BBC Radio 2, the CBBC host recalled his body going numb when he heard he was facing elimination.

Gary began: “Thank you both for coming on the show today. You know where I’ve got to start.

“I actually drafted a question before the weekend about you not being in the bottom two and I think I cursed you.”

“That is horrible,” Rhys laughed as Gary continued: “I think it’s my fault.

“Anyway, last night you were there. What was that feeling like when the light turns red above your head?”

“You know what I feel there was so much fear when you’re up there like, ‘Oh gosh, what if it’s me? What if it’s me?’” Rhys replied.

“And then the minute it happened, the fear went because I was there already.

“I thought, ‘Oh okay,’ then my body went numb for a little while and then I thought, ‘Right I’ve just got to do this now.’

“It’s that kind of fight of flight mode and I think that’s what kicked in.”

Gary remarked: “I didn’t think you deserved to be there at all and your score from the judges was good, you got 32.“

“Yeah it was good and I was saying I was quite surprised by it because they gave a lot of fair, constructive criticism,” Rhys answered.

“I thought, ‘Oh they might mark me down then because I didn’t do all of those things,’ but I was quite pleasantly surprised by that.

“But you know, I knew we were in the middle and the way voting works you can sometimes get lost and people forget.

“I had a sneaky hunch we could aha been in danger but you know, we moved through it.”

Speaking on Sunday night’s Strictly results show, Ugo said of his time on the show: “I’ve loved it.

“It’s an absolute privilege to be on this show and all I’ve wanted to do every week is just get a little bit better and I’ve done that.

“There’s lots of people that I would love to say thank you to.

“Oti, firstly, just for putting up with me. She said she wanted a challenge and she got one!

“To everyone else that’s in the competition, it’s truly incredible and I wish you all the very best of luck.”

Strictly Come Dancing continues Saturday on BBC One at 7.10pm.

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