Nigel Harman / Katya Jones on Strictly It Takes Two

Strictly news: Katya Jones now holds sad record as Nigel Harman becomes her third partner to quit

Katya has been on the show since 2016

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In Strictly news, Katya Jones is now the holder of a record many would rather avoid following Nigel Harman’s early exit from the competition.

Nigel’s exit from the programme was announced on Saturday (December 2) after he picked up an injury in rehearsals.

Katya Jones and Nigel Harman on Strictly
Katya and Nigel have been forced off the show (Credit: BBC)

Strictly news: Katya Jones’ new record

On Saturday, it was announced that Nigel would be leaving the show after breaking a rib.

This means that Katya has been forced to leave the show too. And it seems as though something of a pattern is forming for the Russian dancer.

Nigel is now Katya’s third partner to quit the competition early on medical grounds.

In 2020, Katya was paired up with Nicola Adams. They made history as the first same-sex couple to dance on the show. However, disaster struck in week three when Nicola contracted Covid-19. This meant that they were forced to leave the show.

In 2022, Katya was paired with Tony Adams. However, in week eight, Tony was forced off the show after picking up a hamstring injury.

Now, in 2023, Katya has been forced off the show early again thanks to her co-star’s medical issue.

The last time Katya got to the final was in 2017 when she was paired with Joe MacFadden. They won it together that year.

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A post shared by Katya Jones (@katyajones)

Strictly news: Katya Jones pays tribute

Katya paid tribute to Nigel and their time together on Strictly with an Instagram post today. She uploaded several snaps from their time in the competition.

“And here we are,” she wrote. “What an abrupt ending. But when the dust has settled, I know only beautiful memories will remain in my heart.”

She then listed several memories, including all the times Nigel gave her “reassuring” hugs, the times they performed in front of his family, and, of course, dancing together on Saturday nights.

“I am so grateful this partnership happened. So proud of you and privileged to spend time with such an enormously talented human,” she said.


Nigel Harman on Strictly
Nigel’s behaviour backstage caused issues (Credit: BBC)

Nigel Harman’s exit relief to bosses

Meanwhile, it’s been reported that Nigel’s exit from the show didn’t upset bosses as much as expected. In fact, it was reportedly something of a relief.

“Nigel takes himself very seriously as a performer and throws himself heart and soul into things. So obviously he’s very emotional if things don’t go as he hoped. That often means that he can be like a bear with a sore head backstage,” they told The Sun.

“Viewers got a glimpse of that when he received disappointing scores for their quickstep in Blackpool. The crew and pros on the show are like a close family and the celebrities are welcomed into that. But if someone upsets that long-standing dynamic it can create bad feeling,” they then continued.

“Despite this everyone on the show also felt huge sympathy for Nigel having to leave the competition under such difficult circumstances.”

Read more: Strictly fans beg BBC to show Nigel Harman’s Charleston after he was forced to quit over injury

Strictly continues on Saturday (December 9) at 7.35pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

Nigel Harman and Katya Jones on Strictly It Takes Two, 4th December 2023.

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Robert Emlyn Slater
Senior Writer