Strictlys John Whaite and Johannes Radebe not bothered about winning BBC show

Strictly pair John Whaite and Johannes Radebe say they are ‘‘not bothered’’ about lifting the glitterball on Saturday night as they have already triumphed in their own way.

The dance couple is in the grand final against bookies’ favourite Rose Ayling-Ellis and her partner Giovanni Pernice.

But ex-Bake Off champ John, who is gay, says he has won the contest even before it has been staged by being accepted by the nation and becoming a role model as part of the show’s first ever male same sex pair.

He said: “We are really calm about the final. The thing is we are not bothered about winning.

“It’s been a remarkable journey as we have had so much support and that for me is mega. My friend who is a teacher messaged me saying there were two kids in playground were kissing.

“Two lads – and no one batted an eyelid. It was normal. How great is that – and they weren’t even gay?”

Professional dancer Johannes says he has scored a personal victory too as the BBC show has brought him and his mum closer and they have finally “confronted” the fact he is gay – a topic she had usually avoided.

He explained: “My mum’s relationship with me has improved and it has improved because of this partnership with John.

“It has brought us closer together because we have confronted me and my issue and this whole thing.

“I have won because my mum follows my journey with John religiously which is something that hasn’t happened in I don’t know how long.”

The pair joked their showdance is “dangerous” too.

John said: “It’s fast, breakneck speed and it is dangerous. I am going to have to get double life insurance out.”

AJ Odudu was due to join John and Rose in the final but she was forced to pull out of the competition after picking up an injury.

The official Strictly Come Dancing Twitter account released a statement on Friday, which read: "Sadly due to injury AJ and Kai have had to withdraw from #Strictly and won’t compete in tomorrow’s final.

"We want to thank them for 13 incredible weeks on the show and the pure joy they brought to the dance floor every week."

AJ later explained: "I'm deeply upset that I am unable to perform in the Final due to a torn ligament in my right ankle.

"Learning to dance over the last 13 weeks has been an incredible honour and to do it alongside someone as special, patient and devoted as Kai is something I'll treasure forever.

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"Thank you to the Strictly family for the experience, the medical team for trying to get me back on my feet and mostly, to everyone at home for watching and supporting. You've made this experience one to remember.

"Strictly Come Dancing has been a lifelong dream and I'm glad it came true."

She went on to wish her fellow finalists luck, writing: "Good luck to my partners in dance, John & Johannes and Rose and Giovanni. I will be cheering you on (on one leg!)."

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