Strictly Come Dancing confirms Kelvin Fletcher as Jamie Laing’s replacement

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Kelvin Fletcher, 35, will replace the injured Jamie Laing

Emmerdale actor Kelvin Fletcher has been announced as the replacement for Made In Chelsea star Jamie Laing on Strictly Come Dancing.

Laing, 30, injured himself during filming for Saturday night’s pre-recorded launch show.

Fletcher, who is best known for playing Andy Sugden in Emmerdale, will dance with professional Oti Mabuse.

The announcement was made after celebrities were paired with their professional dance partners.

Former England footballer Alex Scott – the favourite to win Strictly Come Dancing – has become professional dancer Neil Jones’s first celebrity partner.

Reigning champion Kevin Clifton was paired with Anneka Rice in the opening show of Strictly’s 17th series.

New judge Motsi Mabuse said she felt “a part of the family” on her debut.

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PA Media

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Former Arsenal footballer Alex Scott is the favourite to win the show

The pairing of Scott and Jones comes after a torrid year for the professional dancer.

His personal life hit the headlines after he separated from his wife and fellow Strictly dancer Katya Jones after she was photographed kissing her celebrity partner – comedian Seann Walsh.

Anneka Rice cast doubt on whether her partner would be able to win for a second year running. She said: “I haven’t got a rhythm gene, I can’t even clap in time.”

Fan favourite Anton Du Beke has been paired with EastEnders star Emma Barton, another celebrity who is tipped to make it to the grand final.

Du Beke has been on the show since its first series but has never won, having often been paired with the show’s less skilful dancers, such as Ann Widdecombe.

“So this is what it feels like… Book me in until Christmas,” said Du Beke.

The full list of dance pairings

TV presenter Anneka Rice and Kevin Clifton

US singer and TV host Michelle Visage and Giovanni Pernice

Former England footballer Alex Scott and Neil Jones

Ex-Coronation Street star Catherine Tyldesley and Johannes Radebe

Comedian Chris Ramsey and Karen Hauer

BBC Radio 1 DJ Dev Griffin and Dianne Buswell

Former England goalkeeper David James and Nadiya Bychkova

EastEnders star Emma Barton and Anton Du Beke

Fashion model Viscountess Emma Weymouth and Aljaz Skorjanec

Olympic rower James Cracknell and Luba Mushtuk

CBBC presenter Karim Zeroual and Amy Dowden

BBC sports presenter Mike Bushell and Katya Jones

YouTube star Saffron Barker and AJ Pritchard

Paralympian Will Bayley and Janette Manrara

Former Emmerdale star Kelvin Fletcher and Oti Mabuse