Strictly: Rhys talks about the pressures of training
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A new group of celebrities are feeling the burn for the latest season of Strictly Come Dancing, and Rhys Stephenson is no different. The CBBC presenter admitted he had to take a break from rehearsals when he and his partner Nancy Xu previewed their upcoming performance on Thursday night’s It Takes Two.
Rhys Stephenson revealed he stepped out from training this week as he felt the challenges of the Cha-cha-cha build up.
He and partner Nancy Xu will face the judges once again this Saturday in hopes of delivering a flawless Cuban dance routine.
Their Viennese Waltz in the launch show got them off to a strong start, scoring a 27 and putting them fourth in the running.
Speaking to Janette Manrara on Thursday’s episode of It Takes Two, the pair admitted they’re feeling the pressure to stay near the top.
They may be known as Team Energy, but Rhys admitted ‘fear’ was the driving force behind their debut performance.
Nancy then explained: “Well, I do have a little bit of pressure.”
However, the pro-dancer was mostly feeling the heat from her co-star rather than her expectations for her own performance.
She continued: “But my pressure’s from him because he gives himself too [much] pressure in the rehearsal.”
“Sometimes I will just be like, ‘it’s easy, just relax, just empty your mind and let’s do it again’.”
“It’s really easy to just go in on myself sometimes,” her partner Rhys weighed in.
He went on to explain sometimes the best thing to do in rehearsal is to simply take a break.
Rhys continued: “I’ll just be like ‘I’ll do it again, I’ll do it again!’”
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“Nancy’s like, ‘go outside, get some air’. It’s so important.”
Nancy Xu has been a professional dancer since the 17 series of Strictly Come Dancing.
Although she partnered up with EastEnders star Rudolph Walker for the 2019 Children In Need Special, she remained part of the dance troupe for series 17 and 18.
This is the first time she has been partnered with a celeb for a whole series, and she has clearly used her experience to ensure Rhys keeps cool in training.
Their work has paid off so far, as only three partners are ahead of them in the leaderboard.
Rhys and Nancy are just behind the show’s first same-sex pairing John Whaite and Johannes Radebe in third.
Adam Peaty and Katya Jones are tied with John and Johannes with 30 points, with AJ Odudu and Kai Widdrington at the top with an impressive 34.
Strictly Come Dancing continues every Saturday at 7pm on BBC One.
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