Shirley Ballas hits back at troll who accused her of 'drinking' following 'embarrassing' Strictly scores

Shirley Ballas hits back at troll who accused her of 'drinking' following 'embarrassing' Strictly scores

WATCH NOW: Strictly's Eddie Kadi and Karen Hauer's Men in Black routine earned a 10 off Shirley Ballas

Alex Davies

By Alex Davies

Published: 10/10/2023

- 13:00

Updated: 10/10/2023

- 14:35

The Strictly judge gave comedian Eddie Kadi the first 10 of the series on Saturday night

Shirley Ballas has hit back at a social media user who remarked the Strictly Come Dancing judge was "drinking" before Saturday's show.

The criticism was levelled at the show's head judge after she decided to give comedian Eddie Kadi a score of 10 for his Men in Black-inspired routine on Saturday evening.

Kadi and his pro partner Karen Hauer impressed everyone with their performance but none of Ballas' fellow judges came close to lifting the 10 paddle.

She told Kadi and Hauer while delivering her verdict on the dance: "When you do something well, it needs rewarding. This was slick, it had style, it was edgy, it was entertaining, you found your groove.

"Everything that you love in dance you were able to bring today as a partnership, I absolutely loved it," Ballas concluded.

Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse, and Anton du Beke were all impressed with Kadi and rewarded him with three scores of eight each but when the cameras cut to Ballas to deliver her score, she surprised everyone - none least Kadi.

Shirley Ballas awards Eddie Kadi and Karen Hauer a 10

Shirley Ballas awards Eddie Kadi and Karen Hauer a 10 on Saturday night


"It's never too early for a 10 from Shirley!" Ballas yelled as she got to her feet while Kadi slumped to his knees in shock after being given the first 10 of the series.

While it was a significant milestone in the 2023 series, it wasn't enough for Kadi to top the leaderboard as Angela Scanlon took the top spot with a score of 35 alongside partner Carlos Gu.

Now, days on from the incident, Ballas - who recently revealed she feared leaving her house in the wake of online trolling - is still finding criticism flooding her inbox online.

Ballas decided to react to one fan who'd penned on X, formerly known as Twitter: "Shirley you should give the contestants what they deserve!!! A 10 for a dance that wasn’t even a 7!!

"Get real woman and if what some say is true, stop drinking before the show!!!" the angered fan added, which prompted Ballas to respond.

Ballas shared the tweet onto her own page alongside her reaction in which she wrote: "I don’t drink anything before the show or I’ll pee my knickers lol @bbcstrictly."

While Ballas was able to see the funny side of the backlash she garnered, several Strictly fans remained unimpressed.

After Kadi was given a 10, one fan raged on X: "Shirley Ballas needs to grow up, that was never a 10 I’m embarrassed for her #Strictly."

Eddie Kadi and Karen Hauer

Eddie Kadi and Karen Hauer performed their MID routine on Saturday


A second echoed: "F*** me with a rubber duck did Shirley Ballas really give that MIB routine on #Strictly a 10? Little one two step with a CGI-alien that looked like a discarded asset from a lost RTS from 2003?

"There needs to be an enquiry I’ve had enough of this score inflation," they added while a third was similarly dismayed: "Just catching up and wondering if Shirley was replaced by that alien coz no way was that a 10 and Angela's was an 8 #Strictly." (sic)

Kadi's performance saw him sail through to the next week of the competition but the same sadly couldn't be said for radio presenter Nikita Kanda.

Kanda and pro partner Gorka Marquez said their goodbyes after losing the dance-off to Zara McDermott and Graziano di Prima.

Their exit was an emotional one for her but some fans predicted they would be the ones booted off the show as they claimed Kanda was "stitched up" by BBC bosses for their song choice.

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