Shirley Ballas faces calls to be axed from Strictly

Strictly: Richie Anderson voted off show

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On Sunday night’s Strictly Come Dancing, judges Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse and Anton du Beke all decided to save Fleur East when she landed in the bottom two alongside Richie Anderson. However, Shirley Ballas admitted that she controversially would have saved Richie and his dance partner Giovanni Pernice.

Shirley, who replaced Len Goodman as head judge in 2017, also came under fire from fans over some of her criticism and point scoring about some of the celebrities’ dance routines.

At the time, many fans took to social media to share their thoughts about Shirley’s decision to save Richie over Fleur.

Many felt so strongly about it, that they are calling for the head judge to be “axed” from the show.

User @_littleoldm3 said: “We all know Shirley has to be leaving the panel at the end of the series at this point #StrictlyComeDancing #Strictly.”

Bert went on to tell BBC bosses: “Ending her contract for 2023 would be a very good thing for all. #Strictly” (sic)

Nikki said: “If I was Kaye, Matt, Richie or Fleur and Tony was still in AND had avoided the dance off I’d be seriously p****d off (especially Kaye & Richie). It’s all wrong.

“Shirley is disgustingly biased and makes no effort to hide it. Good ones go while the worst dancer stays in.”

Mel Preston simply said: “Get rid of Shirley now! #Strictly.”

“@bbcstrictly #Strictly #Fleur I know it’s an entertainment show but its happy vibe is being ruined for me by Shirley’s bias and bullying. I have put in an official complaint to BBC,” Cassandra tweeted.

While Lesley added: “Shirley is biased, and really needs to give up the head judge seat.”

Anthony Mason fumed: “Shirley Ballas is not a decent judge, from day one I got the impression that her no 1 fan is herself, not putting through Fleur East proves it. Resign and bring back Len!”

Lawrence Bradley joked: “When do we get a chance to vote Shirley off??!!”

Shirley has since responded to the criticism online, and in view of her 79,000 Twitter followers, the judge wrote: “I have received many apologies over the weekend regarding hurtful messages I’ve received on social media.

“All apologies are accepted and from now on let’s all respect each other and enjoy the show.

“Love to you all.” (sic)

After Shirley told Tess Daly she would have saved Richie and Giovanni, the host said: “Of course, it makes no difference to the result but thank you very much.”

Discussing his exit, Richie explained: “As a Strictly fan, I’ve always thought of it as being this magical thing to be a part of and being here, it really is.

“And it’s not just the people that you see on camera like the judges, and you and Claudia, but the people behind the scenes in hair, makeup, everybody.”

Turning to his dance partner, Richie added: “I also want to thank this guy as well.

“He’s just been so amazing, and I fell so lucky that I have been able to dance with you every day.”

Express.co.uk has reached out to the BBC for comment.

Strictly Come Dancing returns on Saturday at 6.30pm on BBC One.

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