Strictly Come Dancing professional Anton Du Beke says it is “impossible” that the show is fixed.
Some viewers have claimed that judges unfairly saved Du Beke and his celebrity partner Katie Derham in Sunday’s dance-off – putting them through to the final.
Responding to tabloid headlines including “Anton’s fix-trot”, BBC proms presenter Derham told Chris Evans on Radio 2: “Chris, like you I’ve worked for the BBC for a very long time. That sort of stuff just doesn’t, cannot, wouldn’t happen.
“It can’t! Too many people keeping an eye on all the Ts being crossed and the Is being dotted. And also, can I just say, how can it be fixed when it’s mostly the public voting?”
Du Beke added: “Forget it! Forget it! It’s impossible!”
After both couples had danced in the dance-off, the judges chose Derham and Du Beke over Anita Rani and Gleb Savchenko – although Rani and her partner had a higher combined score for their two their semi-final dances.
Some viewers said that the couple had been put through because the judges wanted to see Du Beke in the final for the first time in 11 years. He is usually eliminated early in the competition, as past partners have included hopeless dancers Nancy Dell’Olio, Ann Widdecombe and Judy Murray.
But announcing who he had chosen to save, head judge Len Goodman said: “I’m just judging this on this one dance. Nothing that’s been, nothing that could be in the future or in the final, on this one dance. It was totally clear – Katie and Anton.”
In the dance-off, Derham and Du Beke danced their waltz to O Mio Babbino Caro by Giacomo Puccini, which originally scored 31 points – much higher than their Charleston, which earned them just 25 points on Saturday night and brought them down to the bottom of the leader board.
Rani and Savchenko performed a salsa to Feel This Moment by Pitbull feat Christina Aguilera – a dance which had earned them a score of 32.
Du Beke told Evans: “The dance-off is judged on the dance that you put in front of the judges. That’s the moment when they’ve got to go, actually I prefer that to that. And the dance-off went well. There were no mistakes.”
Judge Bruno Tonioli was impressed by the waltz, saying: “All errors have been erased from my memory.”