Belfast Telegraph

Judge Rinder dealt devastating blow before final Strictly dance

Judge Rinder was seen openly sobbing as he and partner Oksana Platero were shown footage of their time on Strictly Come Dancing on Monday night (05Dec16).

Judge Rinder was told someone close to him had died just moments before his Strictly Come Dancing farewell dance.

The 38-year-old television judge exited the BBC talent programme on Sunday night (04Dec16) after losing the dance off to Ore Oduba.

But before he and partner Oksana Platero performed their last dance on the series, Rinder was dealt a devastating blow.

"Someone I really love in my life passed away," he told Zoe Ball on It Takes Two on Monday night (05Dec16). "Genuinely. Then something just happened and I decided to have the most fun I possibly could.

"When we walked out, I could feel the energy of the audience. I felt the energy from everyone to the runner to the people in costume. The love and passion permeates into the show."

The performance was made all the more emotional by the fact that the duo danced to Defying Gravity from the musical Wicked - a favourite of his deceased loved one.

While Rinder had struggled to control his emotions while making the revelation to Zoe, he and Oksana were seen openly sobbing as they were shown a highlights package of their time together on this series.

After the footage aired, Oksana said: "(You taught me) so much. I guess I can say what true dedication is. Because no matter how late he is, how tired he is, how frustrated both of us are... the kind of respect and complete dedication and listening to every word I said - he did it!"

And asked what it is that makes Strictly so special, Rinder replied: "I think with Strictly, people don't want you to do badly. They're willing you to do well."

Rinder now backing Louise Redknapp to take home the glitter ball trophy. She will face off against Oduba, Claudia Fragapane and Danny Mac in next weekend's semi-final (10-11Dec16), before three couples go on to compete in the final of the show.

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