Belfast Telegraph

Pasha held aloft ahead of Strictly professionals tour

The dancer has quit the BBC flagship show.

Nadiya Bychkova, Dianne Buswell, AJ Pritchard, Neil Jones, Pasha Kovalev, Giovanni Pernice, Gorka Marquez, Karen Clifton, Katya Jones and Oti Mabuse attending the Strictly Come Dancing Professionals UK Tour at Elstree Studios, London (Ian West/PA)
Nadiya Bychkova, Dianne Buswell, AJ Pritchard, Neil Jones, Pasha Kovalev, Giovanni Pernice, Gorka Marquez, Karen Clifton, Katya Jones and Oti Mabuse attending the Strictly Come Dancing Professionals UK Tour at Elstree Studios, London (Ian West/PA)

The professional dancers of Strictly Come Dancing held Pasha Kovalev aloft ahead of his final tour before he departs the show.

The Latin and ballroom expert announced he would depart the BBC series earlier this year, having competed in four finals and lifted the glitterball trophy once, with Love Island host Caroline Flack in 2014.

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AJ Pritchard, Neil Jones, Pasha Kovalev, Giovanni Pernice and Gorka Marquez (Ian West/PA)

His appearance on the Strictly Come Dancing – The Professionals tour this spring will be his last commitment before his exit.

Posing alongside fellow professionals Nadiya Bychkova, Dianne Buswell, AJ Pritchard, Neil Jones, Giovanni Pernice, Gorka Marquez, Karen Clifton, Katya Jones and Oti Mabuse, Kovalev can be seen holding his arms wide and smiling for the camera.

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Nadiya Bychkova, Dianne Buswell, AJ Pritchard, Neil Jones, Pasha Kovalev, Giovanni Pernice, Gorka Marquez, Karen Clifton, Katya Jones and Oti Mabuse (Ian West/PA)

Mabuse said: “We’ve all been rehearsing flat out for the last three weeks to bring the fans the most incredible live show.

“It features more than 50 dance routines, including many newly choreographed numbers, plus some great show-stopping moments that audiences will remember from the TV show.

“This tour will be two hours of Strictly Come Dancing at it’s very best – we hope everyone will be blown away by the show we’ve put together.”

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Oti Mabuse and Pasha Kovalev (Ian West/PA)

Pernice added: “We’re really looking forward to the tour opening in Salford tomorrow night – we want everyone to see all the amazing surprises that we’ve got lined up for them.

“We are doing 35 shows across the whole of the country and we are really looking forward to performing for the fans – the atmosphere will be amazing.

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Giovanni Pernice and Nadiya Bychkova performing (Ian West/PA)

“All 10 of us can’t wait to get the show on the road – it’s going to be FAB-U-LOUS!”

Strictly The Professionals UK Tour runs from May 3 to June 2.

It will open at the Salford Lowry and conclude at Sunderland Empire.

PA

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