Entertainment

Bake Off star John Whaite tops Strictly leaderboard with bakery-themed routine

Former rugby player Ugo Monye, meanwhile, faces potential elimination.

Great British Bake Off winner John Whaite has topped the Strictly Come Dancing leaderboard with a bakery-themed Charleston routine that won over the judging panel.

The 32-year-old, who is dancing with Johannes Radebe as part of the show’s first all-male pairing, earned 38 points out of a possible 40 during Saturday’s show.

They danced to Milord by Edith Piaf and their routine, set in a French bakery, ended with Whaite pushing a fake pie made of shaving foam into his dance partner’s face.

On the judging panel, Motsi Mabuse praised their energy and character, while Anton Du Beke simply described it as “just amazing”.

Craig Revel Horwood agreed the routine was “amazing” and took him back to his days dancing at the Moulin Rouge in Paris.

Soap actress Rose Ayling-Ellis secured second place with 37 points for her Viennese waltz to the Alicia Keys song Fallin’, while Tilly Ramsay was in third with 36 points.

CBBC presenter Ramsay spoke of her joy after a “difficult week of training”.

The week also saw her hit back at LBC radio host Steve Allen, 67, after he referred to the 19-year-old as a “chubby little thing” live on air.

Revel Horwood said of her routine: “It had flow, elegance, grace – absolutely gorgeous.”

Former rugby player Ugo Monye, however, faces potential elimination as he sits at the bottom of the leaderboard with 20 points from the judges.

He returned to the dance floor after a week off training due to an old back injury with a rumba to Leave The Door Open by Silk Sonic alongside Oti Mabuse.

The judges were critical, with Shirley Ballas urging him to work on his posture – while Revel Horwood said his performance “lacked musicality” and was “heavy footed”.

Reflecting on missing a week, he said: “It was painful. I Facetimed Oti before just to feel part of it. It’s great to be back.”

TV personality and comedian Judi Love missed the show after testing positive for Covid-19, but will return to the programme next week after her period of self-isolation ends.

As the episode began, co-host Tess Daly wished her a quick recovery, saying: “We hope to see you back in the ballroom next week and we are sending you all of our love.”

Earlier this month, Robert Webb and partner Dianne Buswell withdrew from the show over the TV star’s ill health.

The Peep Show star, who had open heart surgery two years ago, said he was advised by a doctor to quit the show after he had “begun to feel symptoms” while training.

McFly star Tom Fletcher and partner Amy Dowden also recently returned to the dance floor after testing positive for coronavirus.

The duo missed a week of shows while they were self-isolating.

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