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Gemma Atkinson met boyfriend Gorka Márquez when she strutted her stuff on the Strictly Come Dancing dance floor in 2017 with Aljaž Škorjanec in 2017. Speaking on Steph’s Packed Lunch, the former Strictly star gave her verdict on her partner’s first dance with EastEnders’ Maisie Smith following the pair’s glowing feedback from judges Craig Revel Horwood, Shirley Ballas and Motsi Mabuse.
Opening up to Steph McGovern, Gemma shared her thoughts on Maisie and Gorka’s first dance.
She said: “Gorka was so pleased with it. He sends me the rehearsal videos so I can see it first to get my expertise, clearly.
“Maisie had her trackie bottoms on and a t-shirt for the rehearsals and even then she looked incredible doing it.
“I said to him, make sure wardrobe give her a fitted dress so you can see her hips moving and she was incredible and she’s so good in rehearsal with him.”
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She went on to discuss some of her favourite dances from the other Strictly pairings.
Gemma continued: “They were amazing. Luba [Mushtuk] is a fab professional dancer and this is her second partner.
“What I loved about it is that Jason [Bell] smiled all the way through which makes it entertaining to watch.
“I’ve learnt as a viewer you feel awkward watching someone who is clearly nervous but he was so relaxed and he enjoyed it.”
Gemma then gave her verdict on her former Strictly partner Aljaž and Clara Amfo.
“These are my favourites because Clara has had no dance experience, she’s the first to say she doesn’t even wear high heels, she lives in her trainers,” she said.
“To see their journey and their progression, it’s like she’s dancing with Buddy the Elf with Aljaž!”
Gemma added: “I look back now and think ‘I wish I’d given it more oomph’.
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“Because once you are there and it’s live and you’re doing it you’re never going to get it back.
“They’ve tried so hard this year given the restrictions, it’s just the show that everyone loves.”
HRVY and Janette Manrara topped the leaderboard on the weekend with 25 points but Maisie and Gorka were close behind in second place with 24 points.
Clara and Aljaž found themselves in seventh place with a score 18 points while Jason and Luba were in ninth place with 16 points.
Gemma and Aljaž narrowly missed out on the Glitterball Trophy in 2017.
The couple finished the series as runner-ups alongside Alexandra Burke and Gorka and Debbie McGee and Giovanni Pernice.
Joe McFadden and Katya Jones were crowned the winners after wowing the judges and Strictly viewers.
Strictly Come Dancing continues on BBC One on Saturday at 7pm.
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