Judge Rinder talks Benedict Cumberbatch, the rumba and exercising next to David Beckham

Judge Rinder said if he makes the final of Strictly Come Dancing, his good friend Benedict Cumberbatch will be there to support him with “bells on and jazz hands”.

The 38-year-old barrister, whose first name is Robert, has been good friends with the Sherlock star for many years.

Rinder told the Press Association: “Yes. Subject to him being available the answer is yes, he’ll be there with bells on and jazz hands.”

The television star and his professional partner, Oksana Platero, will perform a rumba this weekend to the Bill Withers’ hit, Lean On Me.

He admitted it is the dance that he has been the most terrified of performing.

He explained: “I was most nervous about this dance because I thought it’s the one where you are most exposed as a dancer … and it requires control, it requires real detail, you can’t really make the same mistakes you can in other dances which are quicker, where the feet might … you can correct yourself.”

The television judge added that Platero had eased his fears after showing him the routine.

“Oksana explained the narrative she wanted to tell and the story we’re conveying I really love. It’s incredibly tender and beautiful,” he said.

Last week Olympic long jumper Greg Rutherford was the ninth celebrity to leave and Rinder says the two had become good friends during their time on the BBC One show.

He said: “I was really, really upset. I was moved to tears and my spinal column doesn’t touch my brain normally in that way. I’m not an emotional person in that sort of way. I’ve been more emotional during this process than I have ever.”

“Greg is one of those guys that is just a natural leader, the type of guy you wish was your big brother. He’s funny and decent and kind.”

Rinder admitted he has always been into fitness, but said the added benefit of dancing for so many hours each week is that “you can eat whatever you want”.

He added: “I do a thing called Barry’s Bootcamp – I go every day – the other week I was there and David Beckham was running next to me, it was the coolest thing ever.”

The remaining six couples will face a new challenge this Saturday as they tackle the Cha Cha Challenge, which will see them all performing a cha cha at the same time in the hope of earning extra points from the judges.

Coral bookmakers have predicted that former shadow chancellor Ed Balls will get the boot this weekend, with odds of 11-8 that he will leave the programme.

Strictly Come Dancing returns on Saturday on BBC One at 7pm

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