Skip to main content

Strictly: Martina Hingis is first out!

Strictly: Martina Hingis is first out!
Strictly: Martina Hingis is first out! (Image credit: BBC)

Tennis ace Martina Hingis has become the first casualty of Strictly Come Dancing 2009, after losing out to Rav Wilding in the dance-off. The 28-year-old former Wimbledon champion, who partnered former series winner Matthew Cutler, almost won herself a place in the next round after both she and Crimewatch presenter Rav had reprised their Latin dances from Saturday's show. Both Craig Revel Horwood and Alesha Dixon voted to save Hingis - but Bruno voted in favour of Rav and dance partner Aliona Vilani, leaving head judge Len Goodman with the casting vote. He voted for Rav - and as his vote decides the result in the event of a tie, the presenter scraped through to the next round. "It was a great experience, I learned so much," Hingis said afterwards. "I would have liked it to continue but there we are - maybe I can come back to London for some more lessons." Saturday night's show saw the eight couples who performed a ballroom routine on Friday night returning to the dance floor with either a cha cha cha or a rumba. Both Rav and Martina had danced the rumba, and received a mixed reception from the judges for their efforts. Alesha Dixon said that Rav's performance had "sensuality" but Craig Revel Horwood described it as "awkward and unnatural, with awful posturing". Meanwhile Bruno told Martina that "the potential is there but it loses something in the transition". Len told her it was "very nice to watch". There was also praise on Saturday's show for Ali Bastian - who once again wowed the judges with her Latin routine, following her ballroom triumph on Friday - and Chris Hollins, who picked up plaudits for his rumba. "Chris, you're a dancer," Bruno told him, "and that just proved it." But boxer Joe Calzaghe once again had a rough ride for his cha cha cha. "I have two words," said a cynical Craig Revel Horwood. "Rigor mortis." Next weekend sees another double bill of shows on Friday and Saturday, with the remaining eight couples performing a ballroom routine and a Latin dance.

Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix. 


An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.