Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Gentleman John Sergeant

Just in case you've been under a rock all day.....

Ex-political journalist John Sergeant has pulled out of BBC One's "Strictly Come Dancing" because winning would have been "a joke too far", he has said. The 64-year-old has received strong support from the public since the show started, but the judges have been critical of his dancing.

I fully support John in his decision and his timing.

He told a press conference he was quitting but would return on Saturday's show for a "farewell dance".

Sergeant said dancing on the show was "a wonderfully enjoyable thing", particularly with his Russian partner, Kristina Rihanoff. "But if the joke wears thin, if in fact people begin to take it very seriously, and if people really are getting so wound up that it's very difficult to carry off the joke, then I think it is time to go. It's like when you decide when you leave a party, and the time to leave a party is before the fight starts, and I think that's really what's happened on this occasion," he added.

Rupert Adams, of bookmaker William Hill, told the BBC News website that Sergeant had gone from being a 66/1 outsider to win the series on Saturday morning, to a 10/1 shot by Wednesday morning.

The programme's co-host Bruce Forsyth said he felt "very sorry" for Sergeant. "He was put in the most awkward position, looking at the other dancers and knowing they were better than him. He must have felt guilty in a way. It's a bit sad - the whole team adore him," added the entertainer.

Cluadia introduced an hour long "Strictly - It Takes Two" on Wednesday night as the shock news travelled across the nation.

Sadly, the controversy continued.... Half the people are now saying that he shouldn't have left.... The very same people, like James Jordan, who were complaining last week that he was still in! I've really gone off James - I wonder what Ola seems in him!

Just so you get my point of view - Nobody else has the right to make John's decision for him. So the decision must, therefore, be the right one. And thank you to him and Kristina - a brilliant dancer and choreographer - and all the entertainment they gave us.

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