The competition is really heating up now, as Strictly Come Dancing enters week 10, but sadly Motsi Mabuse will miss out on the live action this weekend.
Fellow judge Craig Revel Horwood was absent last week after testing positive for covid, with Cynthia Erivo stepping in to replace him for musicals week.
And it seems the pandemic is still out to cause chaos this season, as Motsi will have to watch the performances from her sofa tonight.
The South African-German dancer took to social media to explain her absence from the show this weekend, and was inundated with messages of support.
Why isn’t Motsi Mabuse on Strictly Come Dancing tonight?
Viewers will surely miss Motsi’s iconic hairstyles and show-stopping outfits this weekend as she isolates, following close contact with someone who has tested positive for covid.
Releasing a statement on social media, Motsi said she is ‘gutted’ to miss Strictly as NHS Test and Trace contacted her.
The judge has been double vaccinated and had her booster jabs, which guidance would’ve usually allowed her to carry on with her duties.
However, German EU vaccines are not recognised in the UK.
Talking to her 510k Instagram followers yesterday, Motsi wrote: ‘Yesterday I was contacted by NHS Test and Trace as being in close contact with someone on Sunday 21st Nov who has since tested positive.
‘Bring double vaccinated and booster as I am would normally mean exemption from isolation under the ‘close contact’ rules, but unfortunately German EU vaccines are not recognised and neither is my booster in this instance.’
She continued: ‘Our health is the most important thing and luckily I have been tested multiple times this week and am negative.’
After receiving lots of questions from confused Strictly fans regarding her situation, Motsi took to Twitter to clarify that she’s had the Bionthec vaccine, which allows her to still travel.
But, ‘if someone close to you is positive you will have to isolate unless your vaccination was administered in the UK.’
Motsi confirmed she is ‘healthy’ and spending time with her family.
She signed off by sending good luck to the couples this weekend, encouraging her fans to ‘stay safe’ and ‘keep dancing.’
When will Motsi Mabuse return to Strictly Come Dancing?
As she continues to follow UK government guidance, Motsi said she ‘can only return after 30 November 2021 to the UK.’
That leaves plenty of time until the next live show on December 3 so, providing Motsi is well and tests negative, she should be back on our screens and the original four judges will be reunited next week.
It seems the professional dancers will be missing Motsi this weekend also, as Karen Hauer, Janette Manrara, Graziano Diprima and Nancy Xu were quick to flood her Instagram comments with love heart emojis.
Who is replacing Motsi Mabuse on Strictly Come Dancing?
West End superstar Cynthia kept Craig’s seat warm for him last week, probably thinking it was a one-time thing. However, the Strictly production team must have her number on speed dial.
Viewers will be pleased to know the Wicked star will be back this weekend to replace Motsi, after she was a hit with fans and contestants alike with her critique in musicals week.
Strictly made the announcement on their official Twitter page, writing: ‘As Motsi will not be taking part in Strictly this weekend, we are delighted that Cynthia Erivo will be joining us as a guest judge again!
We look forward to having Motsi back in the Ballroom next week.’
Cynthia described her first experience as a Strictly judge as ‘such a joy,’ and joked on Instagram last week, ‘Perhaps there’s room for one more?’
Well, her wish came true!
This is the fourth time so far this series that covid has forced either a judge or contestant to miss the competition.
First to be struck down were Tom Fletcher and his professional partner Amy Dowden – who were eliminated last week.
Next was comedian Judi Love, and third was Mr Nasty himself.
Hopefully, we’ll see Motsi again next Saturday, and we’ll look forward to Craig’s return because, darling, we’ve missed him!
Strictly Come Dancing returns tonight at 6:55pm on BBC One.