Holly Willoughby Shirley Ballas

Holly Willoughby horrified as she apologises over insulting Shirley Ballas blunder: ‘He didn’t mean it’

Holly was left red-faced

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This Morning was thrown into chaos today (October 4) after a phone-in left Holly Willoughby red-faced and apologising.

Poor Holly was forced to say sorry on Wednesday’s show after a guest playing Spin to Win seemingly calling Shirley Ballas a very rude word.

Josie Gibson asked caller Ryan – who had just won a £3k prize – which Strictly star would be appearing on the show later that day.

Ryan seemed to blurt out: “Shirley B*****d.”

Josie Gibson Holly Willoughby
Holly Willoughby apologised after a This Morning viewer got Shirley Ballas’s name wrong (Credit: This Morning)

This Morning today: Holly apologises

A horrified Holly quickly corrected: “Shirley Ballas. Sorry if you heard anything different there.”

Shortly after the slip of the tongue, Holly apologised again. She told viewers: “We just played Spin to Win with Ryan, who won the £3k jackpot, which was amazing.

“I think in the moment, he might have lost himself slightly with his answer to which Strictly judge is coming to see us. He might have said something that slipped out and we are very sorry if you heard that. He didn’t mean it and also sorry to Shirley as well.”

Viewers react

This Morning viewers were quick to pick up on the error.

After the break, we found out all about how Shirley Ballas had her second name changed by deed poll,” said one.

Coming up after the break, it’s Shirley B*stard,” said another. A third commented: “If Shirley was getting depressed about trolls before today, Ryan from Birmingham has just launched a nuclear bomb.” “A bit harsh,” said another Shirley fan.

Shirley Ballas
Shirley was all smiles on This Morning’s sofa (Credit: This Morning)

Shirley brushed off the apparent insult

Meanwhile, Shirley, 63, didn’t seem in the least bit fussed by the name-calling.

She appeared on This Morning to chat about her new book, Murder on the Dance Floor, and was in high spirits as she teased Josie and Holly with the book’s steamy plot.

Shirley said: “Everybody looks at the world of ballroom dancing as if it’s baubles, bangles and beads but actually the true world of ballroom dancing is very much more sinister. Lies, backstabbing, bed-hopping, sex… you know, manipulation. People will do anything to get where they need to go. And you as the reader are going to have to guess, did I witness it? Did I take part in it? Or is it fiction?”

At which point Holly simply said: “Shirley!”

The Strictly judge admitted: “It’s a pretty hot book, even for me.”

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Read more: ‘He is more submissive’: The This Morning star tipped to become Holly Willoughby’s full-time co-host.

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