Rev Richard Coles says ‘paunch’ will help him with Strictly lifts

Strictly Come Dancing’s Rev Richard Coles has joked that his weight will help him perform the perfect lifts when the competition steps up this weekend.

He said his “paunch” will act as a “shelf” to support partner Dianne Buswell when the pair present their second dance on Saturday; an American Smooth to Love Really Hurts Without You by Billy Ocean.

Saturday night’s episode of the BBC One contest will see competition hot up as voting for the first elimination opens up this weekend – and some of the hopeful couples have already hinted at their plans for their first ambitious lifts.

Coles failed to impress the judges with his technique on last Saturday’s opening night, but he is hoping that his next dance could play to his alternative strength.

Speaking on BBC Two spin-off show It Takes Two, Buswell said of their rehearsals this week: “He has got some strength in him.”

But Coles responded: “I’ve got a paunch, it’s like a shelf,” and joked that he could use it to carry Buswell’s weight.

Thursday night’s programme also caught up with Aston Merrygold and Janette Manrara, as well as Joe McFadden and Katya Jones.

After watching week one leaderboard-toppers Merrygold and Manrara’s preparation for a salsa to global summer hit Despacito, pro dancer and Strictly commentator Ian Waite said it was the first time he had been jealous of a celebrity.

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