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Janette Manrara quits Strictly after eight years to replace Zoe Ball on It Takes Two

Strictly Come Dancing pro Janette Manrara confirmed she has left the show as a dancer, and will instead host BBC Two's It Takes Two

Strictly Come Dancing pro Janette Manrara will not be returning to the series this year, after eight years as a professional dancer on the show.

The star confirmed on The One Show on Thursday that she will be replacing Zoe Ball on spin-off series It Takes Two.

She said: "It’s a dream come true to become part of the It Takes Two team!

"Although it’s impossible to fill in the shoes of a legend like Zoe Ball, I hope to make her and all of the Strictly fans proud."

The star added: "I will miss dancing on that iconic dance floor weekly, but forever grateful to continue being a part of the Strictly Come Dancing family!

Strictly Come Dancing pro Janette Manrara will not be returning to the series this year
Strictly Come Dancing pro Janette Manrara will not be returning to the series this year
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"I will not be dancing. I don't want to well up because I have been welling up a lot today, but that has been the hardest part of accepting this amazing honour to join It Takes Two.

"It's the realisation that I will not be on that legendary Strictly dancefloor any more. But I feel that this is most beautiful and natural progression.

"I am still a part of the Strictly family, I am still going to be seeing my fellow pros all the time and I will keep dancing, as they say. I will find a way to keep dancing."

Zoe confirmed her departure after 10 years as host
Zoe confirmed her departure after 10 years as host (Image: BBC)

Eve Winstanley, Executive Producer, It Takes Two, says: “We are so excited that Janette will be Cha Cha Cha-ing her way into the It Takes Two family. Her love and passion for all things dance will bring something new and fresh to the show.”

Alex McLeod, Commissioning Editor for BBC Daytime and Early Peak, says: "We know that our viewers are avid fans of Strictly and cannot get enough expert advice, backstage gossip and dancing tips and tricks. I can't think of anyone better than Janette to do this. I am so excited that she is joining our It Takes Two family.”

Janette will host alongside co-host Rylan Clark-Neal after Zoe's departure, which was announced last month.

Janette Manrara has been on the show for eight years
Janette Manrara has been on the show for eight years (Image: PA)

Zoe confirmed her departure after 10 years as host, while she did not confirm the replacement would be dancer Janette.

She said at the time: "Dance lovers, after 10 joyous years I am waltzing away from It Takes Two.

"As a massive @bbcstrictly fan I have loved spending my Autumn teatimes with the celebrity dancers, the gorgeous & awesome pro dancers, the judges, my girl Vicky Gill, Rylan, Gethin & of course my main man Ian Waite. Time now for some new cha cha challenges.

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"I will continue to support the Strictly family on the Breakfast Show & can’t wait to watch the Class Of 2021 from my sofa.

"Huge love & grateful thanks to Tess & Claude & the whole Strictly clan, the ITT fans, my Glam Squad, Eve Winstanley, Alex McLeod, the BBC2 gang, & of course the best telly crew ever. I will miss you all immensely. As Iveta would say “Friends for the life“ xx."

Janette's husband and co-star Aljaz Skorjanec will remain as a pro on the series it is believed, with the show set to come back later this year.

The One Show airs weeknights at 7pm on BBC One.

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