Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 20 April 2014

Gumede given all-clear for Strictly

Natalie Gumede has been given the go ahead to perform on this week's Strictly

Natalie Gumede has been given the all-clear to dance on Strictly Come Dancing after days of nailbiting - and pain - as she waited to hear whether a back injury would stop her performing.

There were fears she had slipped a disc after she was left in agony following a rehearsal on Tuesday - which could have led to her bowing out completely - and she has had to take two days' rest from training.

But an MRI scan revealed she was suffering from a "compressed disc", coupled with sciatica, and after a further check-up today she has been given the go-ahead to compete in the BBC1 show on Saturday night (October 19).

She has been undergoing physio and steroid injections to ease the pain.

Natalie, who became the early favourite to win the contest, will perform a quickstep to Yeah by Usher when she dances with professional partner Artem Chigvintsev.

She has proved to be a dancefloor talent, topping the leader board again at the weekend after achieving a score of 36 from the awestruck judging panel for her rumba to Rihanna's Love The Way You Lie.

Writing about her health woes in a blog for Yahoo!, she recalled the moment her back went.

She said: "Part way through the quickstep I started to feel faint, and upon repeating the dance I started to notice my back seizing up to the point where I was unable to lift my leg. The next time I tried, an agonising pain shot from my bottom down my leg, and my lower back started throbbing."

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