Zoe Ball says new Strictly Come Dancing judge is likely to be female
15 May 2019 - 10:00 AM

Zoe Ball says new Strictly Come Dancing judge is likely to be female

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Zoe Ball has "heard" that Dame Darcey Bussell's "Strictly Come Dancing" replacement is likely to be a woman.

The 48-year-old host of the BBC One celebrity dance show's sister programme, "It Takes Two", has spilled that there have been whispers that bosses are hoping to get another lady on the judging panel alongside head judge Shirley Ballas, Craig Revel Horwood and Bruno Tonioli, although she would love to see veteran professional dancer Anton du Beke in the role.

According to The Sun newspaper's Bizarre TV column, she said:

"I'd really like to see Anton in that role, he'd be amazing

"But I have heard there is talk the new judge will be a woman.

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"They might pull someone out of the bag that we haven't even thought of."

Zoe - who competed herself on "Strictly" in 2005 with Ian Waite - hailed retired ballerina Darcey, who had appeared as a judge on the programme since 2012, as "naughty and fun" and said whoever does step in her shoes will have a "hard act to follow".

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And whilst she says her exit was a "totals shock", the BBC Radio 2 DJ believes it will be "good" for the show to have a "change".

She added: "I loved Darcey. She is one classy lady but also naughty and fun, so a hard act to follow.

"It was a total shock, but sometimes a change can be a good thing and it's good to go out on top."

Meanwhile, the judging panel isn't the only thing undergoing a shake-up.

Shirley recently explained: "The format will more or less never change but I know for sure that they're making amazing tweaks. I know our new executive producer has some brilliant ideas and I think you'll be really enthralled. I think they go up a notch every year and I think this year you'll be quite surprised.

"They put everything they've got, the BBC, behind the show to make it entertaining for everyone on a Saturday evening. Even on [the sister show] "It Takes Two" they've teamed up Zoe [Ball] with Rylan [Clark-Neal] so there have already been tweaks here and there.

"They've got amazing ideas, it's going to be a big event and I think everyone will enjoy it. I embrace change, I think change is always good."

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