Professional ballroom dancer Kristina Rihanoff was ‘gutted’ when she was paired with Irish singer Daniel O’Donnell according to Strictly judge Craig Revel Horwood.
The revelation comes days before the Russian dance queen is due to release her autobiography, which includes details about her eight years on the popular BBC primetime show Strictly Come Dancing.
Revel Horwood has been a judge on the competition since its inception in 2004, and has a reputation of being hard to please.
He spoke to the Sun newspaper about the pairing of Rihanoff and O’Donnell, saying that “she won’t be falling in love with him”.
The comment was a reference to Rihanoff’s relationship with English rugby ace Ben Cohen, which began after the two were paired together on the 2013 series of Strictly.
Revel Horwood continued: “She’s a bit of a loose cannon, and I feel sorry for Daniel O’Donnell. When she first got paired with him, I think she was gutted! But it was rather obvious she wasn’t going to get a hot, young celeb after everything that’s happened.
“It’s natural to fall in love with your dance partner when you’re spending so much time together and Kristina managed it a few times!
“But somehow I don’t think that will be the case this time around.”
Despite Revel Horwood’s comments, O’Donnell and Rihanoff have so far performed well together on the show. Their first dance together was a waltz to the classic song When Irish Eyes are Smiling, for which they received respectable scores of 7, 7 and 6 from three of the judges but a measly 4 from Revel Horwood.