Zoe Ball steps down from 'Strictly Come Dancing' spin-off 'It Takes Two' after 10 years

·Entertainment reporter, Yahoo UK
·4 min read

Watch: Zoe Ball quits Strictly spin-off It Takes Two after 10 years

Zoe Ball has declared she is "waltzing away" from It Takes Two after 10 years hosting the Strictly Come Dancing spin-off.

The 50-year-old TV presenter has hosted the BBC2 show, offering behind-the-scenes gossip and interviews from the celebrity dance contest, since 2011 and was joined by co-host Rylan Clark-Neal in 2019.

Ball announced on Instagram: "Dance lovers, after 10 joyous years I am waltzing away from It Takes Two.

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"As a massive @bbcstrictly fan I have loved spending my Autumn teatimes with the celebrity dancers, the gorgeous & awesome pro dancers, the judges, my girl Vicky Gill, Rylan, Gethin & of course my main man Ian Waite.

Read more: Oti Mabuse clarifies 'Strictly Come Dancing' exit comments: 'I don’t know why I said that'

"Time now for some new cha cha challenges. I will continue to support the Strictly family on the Breakfast Show & can’t wait to watch the Class Of 2021 from my sofa.

Zoe Ball competed on 'Strictly' in 2005 with Ian Waite. (Getty Images)
Zoe Ball competed on Strictly in 2005 with Ian Waite. (Getty Images)

"Huge love & grateful thanks to Tess & Claude & the whole Strictly clan, the ITT fans, my Glam Squad, Eve Winstanley, Alex McLeod, the BBC2 gang, & of course the best telly crew ever. I will miss you all immensely. As Iveta would say “Friends for the life“ xx"

Strictly's presenters, professional dancers and former celebrity contestants have been quick to pay tribute to Ball's work on the show.

Dancer Oti Mabuse said: "@Zoetheball we are going to miss you so much! You’ve always been a deep part of the family looking forward to hearing you on the radio."

Stacey Dooley, who won the show in 2018, commented: "MY GOD. A LEGEND IS LEAVIN THE BUILDING.

"The kindest woman in tele. We love you Zoeeeeeeee."

The One Show's Alex Jones said: "Zoe!!! It won’t be the same without you!!! We will miss you immensely. I love watching you in the dressing room before the one show. Big love!!!! Al xxx"

Claudia Winklemann and Tess Daly arriving at the red carpet launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2019, held at BBC TV Centre in London, UK. (Photo by Ian West/PA Images via Getty Images)
Claudia Winklemann hosted 'It Takes Two' until she joined Tess Daly on 'Strictly Come Dancing'. (PA)

Loose Women's Ruth Langsford wrote: "Nooooo! Will miss watching you so much....and being on with you both as a guest and an actual CONTESTANT!! You sparkled for 10 wonderful years and you will be missed!"

BBC Breakfast's Dan Walker told her: "Sad to see you go. You’ve been amazing."

And professional dancer Kevin Clifton said: "It Takes Two was always my favourite bit. I loved chatting and bein silly with u on the sofa. Thank you for being so kind , generous and supportive with all of us. You’re the best."

Ball is mother to 20-year-old son Woody Cook — who appeared on Channel 4’s The Circle in 2019 — and 11-year-old daughter Nelly from her marriage to DJ Norman Cook, aka Fatboy Slim.

The former children's TV presenter and radio DJ became host of the BBC Radio 2 Breakfast Show in 2019, which airs on weekdays from 6.30am.

It Takes Two airs on BBC2 from 6.30pm every weekday. The show was previously hosted by Claudia Winkleman from 2004 to 2010, until she joined Tess Daly and the late Sir Bruce Forsyth hosting the main Strictly show at weekends.

Rylan Clark has revealed that this year's It Takes Two will be very different from previous years (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images)
Rylan Clark-Neal joined Ball as co-host of 'It Takes Two' in 2019. (Getty Images)

Ball competed in Strictly Come Dancing in 2005, partnered with professional dancer Ian Waite, and came third.

Her 82-year-old TV presenter father Johnny Ball competed on the show in 2012 and was eliminated in the first week.

Former X Factor contestant turned TV presenter Clark-Neal, 32, previously admitted even he was surprised when he was asked to join Ball as co-presenter on the show, as he had no connection to Strictly.

Read more: Rylan Clark-Neal criticises influencers for 'lording it up on the beach' during lockdown

He said: "I was like ‘Are you sure they’ve rung the right person? They don’t think I’m someone else?’ I genuinely thought I’d turn up for work and they’d be like ‘Hi Rylan, are you OK? Are you lost?’”

But he has been a hit with viewers, and admitted: “There’s nothing better than getting announced you’re doing a job, people slating you, then you do a job and having people go ‘he’s actually all right’.

“At the beginning it felt like a fight, but nowadays I actually expect it - and I sort of thrive on it a bit.”

Watch: Zoe Ball on It Takes Two duty at the Strictly Come Dancing launch

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