Strictly Come Dancing 2021: Sara Davies dealt disappointing blow hours before live show

Strictly: Sara Davies says she is not used to being out of control

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Last week’s opening show saw 15 famous faces take to the dancefloor for the first time to strut their stuff alongside professional partners. Strictly Come Dancing returns tonight, and with it will come the very first elimination from the series. Sara Davies, partnered with Aljaž Skorjanec, performed a Cha Cha last week and received mixed feedback, landing a score of 17/40. Unfortunately for the Dragons’ Den star, she has now been tipped as being the first contestant to exit the BBC One show.

Entrepreneur Sara, 37, has been in hit BBC sales pitch show Dragons’ Den since 2019.

But the odds don’t seem to be in her favour for Strictly Come Dancing, with betting company William Hill placing her at most likely to leave the show first.

She is the 2/1 “favourite” in this category, with rugby star Ugo Monye behind her at 9/4.

Sara’s score last week placed her at the bottom of the leaderboard, which perhaps has something to do with the way the odds are looking.

Former rugby player, Ugo Monye, is the next most likely to depart, while Tilly Ramsay (5/1) and Katie McGlynn (6/1) are also in contention for the boot.

Rupert Adams, spokesperson for William Hill, said: “Sara Davies didn’t fare too well on her Strictly debut last week and after being bottom of the leaderboard, we make her the 2/1 favourite to be eliminated first.

“The odds suggest it’s a straight fight between the two celebrities who struggled most last week with Ugo Monye, only a point above Davies last week, the other leading elimination candidate at 9/4.”

Currently, actress Rose Ayling-Ellis is the favourite to win this year’s competition, according to William Hill.

The EastEnders star heads into Saturday night’s show as the 3/1 favourite, with Bake Off star John Whaite second in the betting at 4/1.

Next is AJ Odudu with odds of 9/2 to be the overall winner. The TV presenter wowed judges last week and achieved a score of 34 for her jive with partner Kai Widdrington.

Responses from the judges were promising, with new judge and former professional Anton Du Beke stunned by her performance.

The 55-year-old told AJ the dance was “about as good as I’ve ever seen” for a week one performance.

He added: “I mean we’ve just dropped into week nine or something, not week one.

“There’s not much to say, it was absolutely remarkable. Completely brilliant.”

‘Harsh’ judge Craig Revel Horwood commented: “AJ, darling you need to control your mother – she has had me in a headlock all the way through that.

“I loved it, incredible. Absolutely incredible.” AJ appeared in disbelief as she responded: “Oh my God!”

Despite this, former professional AJ Pritchard told earlier this week that AJ would probably struggle more with the slower Foxtrot this week, and has said Sara is the one to watch.

“It’s going to be harder with the slow dances for them,” commented the 26-year-old. “I’m quite excited, I think they’ve got a Foxtrot, which is a very hardcore dance.

“It’ll be an interesting contrast from that extremely quick Jive, which is usually easier to hide a lot of problems, to a very slow dance.”

Have the bookies called it, or could there be a complete reshuffle of the leaderboard, as AJ predicts?

Strictly Come Dancing continues tonight at 6.45pm on BBC One.

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