Pasha Kovalev: Strictly Come Dancing dancer quits BBC series after eight years

The Russian dancer won the show with celebrity partner Caroline Flack in 2014

Jacob Stolworthy
Wednesday 13 February 2019 14:41 GMT
Strictly Come Dancing: Ashley Roberts & Pasha Kovalev top leaderboard at semi-final for American Smooth routine

Strictly Come Dancing favourite Pasha Kovalev has announced he is leaving the BBC series.

After eight “fantastic” years, the Russian dancer will step down from the dancing competition. He announced the news on Twitter where he said it’s time for him ”to find a new challenge”.

“Thanks to the incredible partners, professionals and myriad of behind the scenes teams who all work to make Strictly the amazing production it is,” he posted to his followers, thanking them for their support over the years.

The show’s official Twitter account thanked Kovalev for his “amazing choreography and routines” and said he’ll be “hugely missed”.

“Pasha is an incredibly talented and dedicated dancer who is much loved by his Strictly family and viewers and will be hugely missed” they said.

Kovalev joined the show in 2011 and, two years later, was paired with Rachel Riley whom he has been in a relationship with ever since.

He finished as a runner-up with Kimberley Walsh and, in 2014, won the show with celebrity partner Caroline Flack.

In the most recent series, Kovalev was paired with Ashley Roberts who made it to the live final.

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