Stacey Dooley has shut down claims that she urged her boyfriend Kevin Clifton to quit Strictly Come Dancing.
Kevin won the 2018 series of the show with Stacey, with the pro dancer announcing his departure after seven years to ‘focus on other areas of his life and career’.
Reports claimed that Stacey had encouraged Kevin to leave because she ‘thinks they can be a bit of a TV power couple’.
And she has now taken to Twitter to explain to her fans that it’s ‘utter nonsense’.
Sharing a screenshot of one of the reports she insisted: ‘Honestly, we knew this would happen.
‘And so it starts, again…… Utter nonsense.’
Stacey’s rep also told Metro.co.uk that the claims are ‘completely untrue’.
Reports have also surfaced that the 37-year-old decided to quit the show because he has been offered a role on London’s West End.
The professional dancer is thought to be swapping the dancefloor for the stage and it makes sense after he recently finished up a run of playing the lead role in The Wedding Singer at the Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre and is set to embark on a tour of Burn The Floor with his sister and fellow former Strictly pro Joanne Clifton.
‘Kevin’s decision came as a real shock to many of those involved in the show,’ a source explained.
‘Bosses were shocked that somebody who has benefited so much from the show wants to walk away.’
‘But he’s got a West End deal in place already and that’s going to take up most of his year so there was no persuading him to stay. His mind was made up,’ they continued to The Sun.
The professional dancer confirmed the news on Instagram on Friday with a lengthy statement.
He wrote: ‘The past 7 years have been some of the most wonderful years of my life. I am grateful to the BBC and Strictly Come Dancing for giving me the opportunity to have been a part of something truly special.
‘Since first being called Kevin From Grimsby by Sir Bruce Forsyth in 2013 I have experienced the highs of 5 finals, winning a Guinness World record on It Takes Two, the Strictly Arena tour glitterball and then the ultimate of winning the 2018 series with Stacey Dooley.
‘After finishing last series with the Children In Need trophy and the Christmas Special I want to leave on a high and have therefore decided the time has come to move on and focus on other areas of my life and career.’
The 37-year-old continued: ‘I want to thank all of the pros for inspiring me every day as well as all of my celebrity partners. The whole team behind the scenes have made always made the Strictly family what it is and the loveliest show to work for.
‘Thank you to anyone who has ever voted for me and my partners. It means the world.
‘And a special thank you to Jason Gilkison for always believing in me.
‘To me Strictly always has been and always will be the best show on tv and has been an absolute dream and honour to be a part of.
‘Pre 2013 I used to watch every week. Now I look forward to returning to being a fan and cheering on my friends who keep dancing.’
Metro.co.uk has contacted Kevin’s reps for a comment.
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