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Strictly Come Dancing 2018: Star speaks out on ‘smartest move ever made' by BBC | Celebrity News | Showbiz & TV

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Gary Edwards, who was tipped to replace Len Goodman when he retired from Strictly Come Dancing last year, has revealed his thoughts on this year’s contestants.

The Essex-born dancer said he believes getting YouTube sensation Joe Sugg on the show was the “smartest thing” BBC have done.

Gary has even tipped the 27-year-old to win the competition, due to his huge popularity online.

Speaking to about the celebrities, he spilled: “This year they’ve got Joe Sugg and that’s a key move by the BBC.”

He added: “The Joe Sugg move is the smartest thing they have done for a long time.”

Gary continued: “From a professional view, if I was a Strictly super fan I wouldn’t have liked it but from the BBC’s perspective, it would be good.”

Joe boasts almost six million Instagram followers and has more than eight million subscribers on YouTube.

Gary said having Joe on the programme will improve viewing figures, especially from young people.

He claimed: “Less and less people are watching TV live with youngsters watching shows off of their phones and iPads so bringing Joe Sugg gets more live viewers.”

Gary also divulged all on who he thinks will get their hands on the Strictly trophy and said: “I would always say whose the best entertainer would win.

"I think this year you’ve got be entertaining and have a huge fan base, which is Joe.”

He continued: “It’s going to push what Strictly stands for. If his [Joe’s] fans vote, he has won, as long as he gets seven or eights on the leaderboard and that isn’t a bad thing.”

And Joe has certainly made an incredible first impression as the social media star received 27 points from the judges last week.

Joe performed an entertaining Jive with his professional partner Dianne Buswell and they are now getting ready to take on the Charleston.

In the middle of their rehearsals, the two took the time out to chat to Zoe Ball on spin-off It Takes Two tonight.

On the show, Dianne admitted she feels emotional about Joe’s progress already.

“He’s a true novice to dancing,” Dianne revealed on It Takes Two. “He’s never done it before. When I looked back from his day one of training doing that jive until that final dance we did on Saturday night, I got emotional. I really did."

“Did you?” asked Joe who was surprised by Dianne’s statement.

She said: “I did. I told you this! Don’t make me cry! I stopped, and I went, ‘Dianne, don’t cry. Don’t cry.’

“But I got so emotional because it’s such a priority for us to see these guys come from zero and then to go out and bust that Jive out.”

Strictly Come Dancing continues on Saturday on BBC One at 6.30pm.

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