Boxing champion Nicola Adams has left Strictly Come Dancing after partner Katya Jones tested positive for coronavirus. Adams and professional dancer Jones, who made history as the show's first-ever same-sex pairing, have been forced to bow out of the hit ballroom competition after Jones tested positive for COVID-19. The pair have now begun self-isolating separately, in line with government guidelines.
In a statement confirming her departure, Adams said she is "absolutely devastated" her Strictly journey has come to an end. "Hey guys! I’m absolutely devastated my Strictly journey has come to an end so soon. I had so much more to give and so many people to win this for." she continued: "I just want to say a huge thank you to Katya for being the best dance partner anyone could ask for. She pushed me way out of my comfort zone and it’s been an incredible experience."
In the statement, Jones also commented on the disappointing news, paying tribute to her Olympic gold medal-winning partner. "Dancing with Nicola has been an absolute inspiration. She’s given her all each and every week and we were so excited to create more dances in the competition. Of course, I’m devastated to leave this way but I’ve made a friend for life and loved every moment of this special journey. I’d like to wish good luck to all the remaining couples," she concluded.
Elsewhere, Strictly Come Dancing executive producer, Sarah James, said the BBC are "incredibly sad" Adams and Jones will no longer be a part of the show's eighteenth series.
"We are incredibly sad that these unfortunate circumstances mean that Nicola and Katya are unable to continue on Strictly," James commented. "They are a brilliant partnership and had already achieved so much during their time on the show. We’d like to thank them for their commitment and although their time in the competition has sadly come to an end we are hopeful that there will be opportunities for them to dance again in the future."
The BBC statement also confirmed no other cast members have been affected, and the show will go ahead as normal this weekend.
Strictly Come Dancing continues on Saturday at 7.10 p.m. on BBC One.