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Strictly's Giovanni Pernice 'in favouritism row as BBC bosses plan to pair him with Richie Anderson'


Giovanni Pernice has reportedly been engulfed in a favouritism row as Strictly Come Dancing bosses plan to pair him with Richie Anderson in a same-sex couple.

The ballroom pro, 31, who won last year’s series with Rose Ayling-Ellis, 27, has allegedly ‘raised eyebrows’ among his peers who believe he will ‘sail’ through the rounds again.

It had already been confirmed that Richie, 34, would be partnered with another male, which will see him follow in the footsteps of Nicola Adams and 2021 runner-up, John Whaite. 

Uh-oh: Giovanni Pernice (pictured) has reportedly been engulfed in a favouritism row as Strictly Come Dancing bosses plan to pair him with Richie Anderson in a same-sex couple

Uh-oh: Giovanni Pernice (pictured) has reportedly been engulfed in a favouritism row as Strictly Come Dancing bosses plan to pair him with Richie Anderson in a same-sex couple

A source told The Sun: ‘Some of Gio’s fellow pros have raised eyebrows about chat of him getting Richie.

‘The last two same sex couples have done really well and the feeling is that whoever gets Richie could go all the way and win it.

‘Winning two on the bounce would be great for Gio — but not all of his colleagues feel the same way.’

MailOnline has contacted the BBC for comment.

Exciting: It had already been confirmed that Richie, 34, (pictured) would be partnered with another male, which will see him follow in the footsteps of Nicola Adams and John Whaite

Exciting: It had already been confirmed that Richie, 34, (pictured) would be partnered with another male, which will see him follow in the footsteps of Nicola Adams and John Whaite

It comes after Helen Skelton was the final celebrity contestant confirmed for the brand new series of Strictly Come Dancing.

The TV and radio broadcaster, 39, was widely tipped to be taking part in the BBC ballroom show and her spot on the programme has now been confirmed as she completes the full celebrity line-up.

It was revealed on Saturday morning on BBC Radio 2 during Claudia Winkleman’s breakfast show that Helen – who split from husband Richie Myler earlier this year – would be appearing on the show.

Helen said: ‘I’m really excited to get stuck into a fun adventure. My family and friends have always loved the show and can’t wait for me to get started.’

Victorious: The ballroom pro, 31, who won last year's series with Rose Ayling-Ellis , 27, has allegedly 'raised eyebrows' among his peers who believe he will 'sail' through the rounds again (pictured in December 2021)

Victorious: The ballroom pro, 31, who won last year’s series with Rose Ayling-Ellis , 27, has allegedly ‘raised eyebrows’ among his peers who believe he will ‘sail’ through the rounds again (pictured in December 2021) 

EastEnders actor James Bye, 38, – who has played the role of Martin Fowler in the BBC show since 2014 – was previously announced as the 14th star.

It comes after former X Factor star Fleur East and Countryfile star Hamza Yassin were revealed as the 12th and 13th stars on Thursday – joining earlier announced stars Kym Marsh, Will Mellor and Jayde Adams among others.

On Friday soap star James joked he is ready to show off his ‘dad dancing’ when he heads to the ballroom later this year.

As he was announced James said: ‘I’m not known for my shimmy or my twinkle toes – in fact my kids regularly laugh at my dad dancing but it’s an honour to be asked and I’m going to give it my best shot.

‘There are some huge dance shoes to fill and it’s truly exciting to follow in the footsteps of some amazing EastEnders talent. I’d love to do everyone proud.’

It comes after Wildlife cameraman and presenter Hamza was announced as the 13th contestant joining the Strictly Come Dancing line-up on Thursday.

Hamza – who is one of the presenters of BBC’s Animal Park and a guest presenter on Countryfile – joined former X Factor star Fleur in being revealed as celebrities set to appear on the dance show on Thursday.

Jealous: A source said: 'Some of Gio's fellow pros have raised eyebrows about chat of him getting Richie' (pictured)

Jealous: A source said: ‘Some of Gio’s fellow pros have raised eyebrows about chat of him getting Richie’ (pictured)

It comes amid claims that BBC bosses fear they are running out of celebrities as Strictly approaches its 20th series.

Hamza Yassin said: ‘I am absolutely over the moon to be joining Strictly 2022. Never in a million years did I think I’d be on such a cool show. I’ve been watching it for years and I can’t believe I’ll actually be there dancing live in front of the British public.

‘My dance skills are currently at the level of ‘1970’s disco vibe’ but I’m ready to work hard and will be shaking it every time I get the chance – shake it ’til you make it!’

It comes after The Mail on Sunday revealed that some BBC executives are concerned that there are no longer enough big names available to compete for the glitterball.

As comedian Jayde Adams was the fifth competitor to be unveiled for this year’s series, even Radio 5 DJ and former Strictly star Scott Mills shared his worries – telling his listeners that he now thinks they should start putting on former contestants.

The announcement about Miss Adams came just a day after it was revealed that Radio 2 travel reporter Richie is in this year’s line-up.

One source at the Corporation said: ‘Taking part on Strictly is a dream for so many celebrities, but so many of them have done it now. They have lived that dream and reaped the massive benefits of it.

STRICTLY COME DANCING 2022: WHO ARE THE CONTESTANTS?

KYM MARSH

Age: 46

Profession: Coronation Street star and presenter

Kym says: ‘I’m so delighted that this year they have! I’m a huge fan of the show and can’t believe I’m going to go from watching at home in my pyjamas to actually dancing in front of the judges in a glittery dress.’

RICHIE ANDERSON 

Age: 34

Profession: Radio presenter 

Richie says: ‘This is a dream come true! I cannot wait to get in those sparkles and sequins and shimmy across the most famous dance floor in the world!’

ELLIE SIMMONDS 

Age: 27

Profession: Former athlete 

Ellie says: ‘To be asked to be part of the Strictly family is just so exciting and I cannot wait, it’s going to so much fun.’

TYLER WEST 

Age: 26

Profession: Radio DJ

Tyler says: ‘It’s a show that means so much to me and my family and I can’t wait to seriously shake a leg on that shiny dance floor… with a side of sequins.’

ELLIE TAYLOR

 

Age: 38

Profession: Comedian

Ellie says: ‘Well, cover me in fake tan and roll me in sequins! I’m absolutely over the moon to be a part of Strictly 2022!’

TONY ADAMS MBE 

Profession: Retired footballer and manager

Tony says:  ‘To say I’m excited is an understatement – the lure of the sequins and the call of the salsa has me swapping my battered old football boots for a set of Strictly soft shoes’

  

JAMES BYE

Age: 38

Profession: EastEnders actor

James says ‘I’m not known for my shimmy or my twinkle toes – in fact my kids regularly laugh at my dad dancing but it’s an honour to be asked and I’m going to give it my best shot.’

HELEN SKELTON

 Age: 39

Profession: TV and radio broadcaster

Helen says: ‘I’m really excited to get stuck into a fun adventure. My family and friends have always loved the show and can’t wait for me to get started’

WILL MELLOR

Age: 46

Profession: Actor

Will says: ‘I know it will be a huge challenge but that’s what life is all about. This is also my Mum’s favourite show and she’s had a really tough few years so I’m doing this is for her as well. Bring it on!’

 KAYE ADAMS 

 Age: 59 

Profession: Television presenter 

Kaye says: ‘I said I wanted to make the last year of my fifties memorable and i can’t think of a better way of doing it than showing the world my two left feet. Pray for me!’ 

 JAYDE ADAMS

Age: 37

Profession: Comedian

Jayde says: ‘I’ve been a massive fan of the show for years. I feel like I’m watching myself in a dream and I can’t believe I’ve manifested this.’

MATT GOSS

Age: 53

Profession: Singer

Matt says: ‘I’ve been reclusive, I come and work and then go back to America. I thought, it’s time for me to come home and get out of my own way’

 MOLLY RAINFORD

 Age: 21

Profession: Singer 

Molly says: ‘I already know it’s gonna be an experience of a lifetime and I can’t wait to meet the rest of the Strictly family I’ll be sharing it with.’

FLEUR EAST

Age: 34 

Profession: Singer

Fleur says: ‘I’m equally nervous and thrilled to be part of this year’s Strictly line up. I’m excited to learn new skills and I want to soak up every moment of this magical experience.’

 HAMZA YASSIN

Age: 35

Profession: Wildlife cameraman and presenter

Hamza says: ‘I am absolutely over the moon to be joining Strictly 2022. Never in a million years did I think I’d be on such a cool show.’

 

 

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