Strictly Come Dancing 2020: Bruno Tonioli Gives Cheryl His Blessing To Replace Him

26 June 2020, 08:58

Cheryl has Bruno Tonioli's backing to replace him on Strictly 2020
Cheryl has Bruno Tonioli's backing to replace him on Strictly 2020. Picture: PA

Bruno Tonioli has backed Cheryl to replace him on Strictly Come Dancing, as he’s unable to join the judging panel for the 2020 series.

Strictly Come Dancing will be a very different format this year, with a shorter series planned and possibly a new face on the judging panel as Cheryl is tipped to step in for Bruno Tonioli.

Bruno has spent the past 15 series flying back and forth from London to LA, due to Strictly’s schedule clash with its US equivalent Dancing with the Stars.

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But with Covid-19 and the travel restrictions it has caused, Bruno will unlikely be able to fly between the countries every week.

Cheryl is amongst the rumoured names tipped to replace Bruno, as well as 2018 winner Stacey Dooley, and the Italian ballroom professional has given his blessing for the Girls Aloud star to fill his seat.

Bruno is unable to take part in this year's Strictly due to coronavirus travel restrictions
Bruno is unable to take part in this year's Strictly due to coronavirus travel restrictions. Picture: PA
Cheryl was a judge on The Greatest Dancer for two series before it was axed
Cheryl was a judge on The Greatest Dancer for two series before it was axed. Picture: PA

He told the tabloids: “If Cheryl does end up doing it there would be nothing wrong with that. She’s a lovely girl. I like her.

“Of course she’s not me, but we’re all different. We all have different things to offer but I’ve heard nothing concrete.”

Bruno has been a judge on Strictly and the US version of the show since they both launched in 2005.

He added: “For years and years I’ve spent two days of each week on the plane flying between London and LA.

“I leave America on Wednesday and come back every Sunday but now it’s impossible and, because of the current travel restrictions, it’s beyond my control.

“Under normal circumstances I take a deep breath and do the travel. I love the show and love to do it and normally I’m destroyed by Christmas, but this year is different for everyone.

“Under the current restrictions they just won’t allow it. I don’t know what’s going to happen.”

Cheryl is well experienced in being a reality TV competition judge
Cheryl is well experienced in being a reality TV competition judge. Picture: PA

Strictly is running a shorter series this year due to the coronavirus restrictions, and its start date reportedly isn’t until October.

Cheryl could make the perfect candidate for keeping Bruno’s seat warm, as she has previously judged The X Factor from 2008 to 2011 and again from 2014 to 2016, as well as two series of The Greatest Dancer – where she worked with Strictly veteran Oti Mabuse.

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