But Graeme Swann’s Strictly Come Dancing journey came to an end as he became the ninth celebrity to leave the BBC show on Sunday night.
The professional cricketer, 39, and pro partner Oti Mabuse faced Ashley Roberts and her partner Pasha Kovalev in the dance off – despite the ex-Pussycat Doll being one of the strongest dancers in the competition.
And Graeme appeared to make a dig at his competitor’s previous dance experience as he quipped: ‘Secretly I’ve had 25 years of ballroom experience but I kept that to myself! No, I was a novice coming in to this…’
Time to say goodbye: Graeme Swann Strictly Come Dancing journey came to an end as he was the ninth celebrity to leave the BBC show on Sunday with pro partner Oti Mabuse
Both couples had to perform their Saturday night routines again with Graeme and Oti dancing a quickstep to Sing Sing Sing by The Andrews Sisters.
While Ashley and Pasha performed a Samba to Hot Hot Hot by Arrow.
After both pairs had danced for the second time the judges delivered their verdicts with all four judges agreeing to save Ashley and Pasha.
Craig Revel Horwood said: ‘For me it’s a no brainer and the couple I’d like to save is Ashley and Pasha’.
Face off: The professional cricketer, 39, and Oti faced ex-Pussycat Doll Ashley Roberts and partner Pasha Kovalev in the dance off
And Darcey Bussell agreed: ‘The couple I would like to save based on this dance is the more technically effient performance and that was Ashley and Pasha’.
With Bruno Tonioli saying that Ashley and her partner were ‘much much stronger on every level’.
Head Judge Shirley Ballas said she agreed with her fellow judges and would have saved Ashley and Pasha.
Graeme told presenter Tess Daly: ‘I’d have voted for Ashley and Pasha as well’.
Strictly over: After both couples had danced for the second time the judges delivered their verdicts with all four judges agreeing to save Ashley and Pasha
No brainer: Graeme told presenter Tess Daly: ‘I’d have voted for Ashley and Pasha as well’
He gushed: ‘This show and what you’ve got is something special and thank you for letting me be a part of it’ and then joked: ‘Secretly I’ve had 25 years of ballroom experience but I kept that to myself.
‘No, I was a novice coming in to this. This woman Oti is, this girl sorry, she’s not old enough to be a woman obviously has just made me fall in love with this whole dance nonsense.
‘I absolutely adore you for that, I’ll never forget everything you taught and shouted at me for weeks and weeks. My fingers will never be open in ballroom and that’s for you Craig, every week, that’s for you.
‘To be honest let’s face it when you get down to the nitty gritty of this competition, I was on borrowed time, unless I learnt to fly or something I wasn’t going to get past here.’
Friends for life: Oti gushed: ‘I have never laughed so much, I’ve never been so angry so much. I have the best friend in you’
Skilled: Graeme and Oti lasted ten weeks in the hit BBC One show before being voted off after a quickstep routine
Oti, 28, was equally as fond of Graeme: ‘I’ve had the best season of my entire career on Strictly. I have never laughed so much, I’ve never been so angry so much. I have the best friend in you.
She finished with: ‘We might not have been the best dancers but you have the spirit of Strictly. The show is such a nice family to be a part of, the judges are amazing, the pros and the celebs are such a great support because they are lovely so thank you guys.’
It came as a surprise that Ashley was in the bottom two, having consistently been one of the highest scoring stars in the competition.
Viewers were quick to react on Twitter to the shocking news, with one adding: ‘Ash & Pash? Are you kidding? No brainer as to who the judges are dumping then.’
Reaction: Viewers were quick to take to Twitter to express their shock at the news
Another commented: ‘AshnPash dance off? WTF,’ while one added: ‘Ashley and Pasha in the dance off!! Think viewers appreciate those who’ve not danced before and the progress they’ve made.’
One viewer continued: ‘#Strictly what an absolute disgrace, Ashley in the bottom two?!! People may be annoyed that she’s in the show competing against people without a dance background but let’s face facts, she’s amazing & deserves her place in this competition! Fuming.’
However, the singer was criticised by the judges for lacking technique with her Samba on Saturday evening.
After getting the first 40 of the series with their retro Fish and Chips themed jive last week, the Pussycat Doll, 37, shimmied, samba rolled, and pulsed as she performed with partner Pasha Kovalev to Hot Hot Hot by Arrow.
Downhill: After getting the first 40 of the series with their retro Fish and Chips themed jive last week, Ashley was criticised by the judges for lacking technique with her Samba
Kick-starting the critique, Bruno said: ‘She’s got me, I think I need a complete rewiring. She has blown all my fuses. Your hips are weapons, lethal weapons.’
Craig added: ‘I felt you hit it a little to hard, a little too staccato. What you lack in technique you certainly make up for in performance my darling.’
Saturday’s show saw all seven couples take to the dancefloor for the Lindy-Hop-A-Thon at the same time to impress the judges for extra points.
And Sunday’s results show opened with a group routine between the Strictly pros and dance company, Candoco as well as a musical performance from music legend, Sir Rod Stewart singing his new song ‘Farewell’.
Shock: It came as a surprise that Ashley was in the bottom two, having consistently been one of the highest scoring stars in the competition
Unbeatable: After her performance on Saturday night, Ashley hinted she is unbeatable as she shared a funny snap ‘beating’ Pasha at an arm wrestling competition