Strictly’s Anneka Rice jokes she was helicoptered into the launch show

Strictly’s Anneka Rice jokes she was helicoptered into the launch show at the last minute after fans notice her vanish and then ‘magically reappear’ during group dance in wake of injury

Anneka Rice has addressed the fact that, during Saturday night’s Strictly Come Dancing launch show, she appeared to vanish and then reappear in the group dance.

Viewers noticed that she was no-where to be seen during the dance – which featured all of the celebrities and the professional dancers – only to suddenly materialise between Saffron Barker and Anton Du Beke when the camera shot changed.

One fan tweeted Anneka, 60, posting: ‘I have watched the launch show of @bbcstrictly 4 times and can not spot you in the group dance with @TheAntonDuBeke until the very end. Did you helicopter in?’


Spot the difference: Anneka Rice has addressed the fact that, during Saturday night’s Strictly Come Dancing launch show, she appeared to vanish and then reappear in the group dance

To which the blonde broadcaster replied: ‘Yes! Helicoptered in at the end. Wasn’t allowed to dance because of my shoulder injury but happy to report I am declared fit for training on Monday with Kevin!’ 

Kevin [Clifton] was announced as Anneka’s partner this year during the show, which many were shocked by, given that the Treasure Hunt star is taller than him.

Anneka was forced to sit out the group dance, but was sure to be included in the big finish, tacked on at the end of the group as they posed for the camera. 

But Anneka had previously sparked concerns that she wouldn’t be able to take part in the ballroom show at all, after suffering a nasty fall just six weeks before rehearsals started.

Ta-dah! Viewers noticed that she was no-where to be seen during the dance – which featured all of the celebrities and the professional dancers – only to suddenly materialise at the end

Confused: One viewer asked her outright where she was, on Twitter

The daredevil action women told MailOnline that she’s been having a treatment of steroid injections to help her inflamed shoulder. 

Swapping the parachutes for the pas du bourré, Anneka admitted she’s had a tough start to the competition. 

‘About six weeks ago, I fell in my neighbour’s garden, going down quite a slippery slope, it was after I had signed up and was all ready to go, but in the middle of my proper fitness training, so the last six weeks I have had to really rest it,’ she said.

‘It has got a small tear, and it is inflamed, but it is nothing so bad that I can’t carry on, I’ll be fine, it is just swollen,’ she added, explaining she’s undergoing treatment. 

She tweeted: ‘Helicoptered in at the end. Wasn’t allowed to dance because of my shoulder injury but happy to report I am declared fit for training on Monday with Kevin!’

‘I had steroid injections and hopefully with a miracle, it will be fine. Typical timing… It is sod’s law! Can I just say that is the definition.’ 

The star, who at 60 is the oldest of this year’s Strictly celebs, admitted that her injuries have only multiplied since group rehearsals kicked off last month.

She explained that she had recently gone for a massage, and the therapist was shocked by her bruising. 

‘I’m covered in bruises, and the lady went “are you all right?” I was literally covered, and that was literally from Anton tossing me around like a bloody rag doll!’

Here come the stars! Swapping the parachutes for the pas du bourré, Anneka admitted she’s had a tough start to the competition

Anneka previously confessed empty nest syndrome had prompted her to be braver than ever before – finally accepting the offer from producers to take part after years of declining.

‘I feel a great release of mothering duties. It’s made me feel a bit reckless this year’, she explained. 

‘[The thought of the costumes] horrifies me, I not interested in frilly or flouncy clothes at all!’

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