Natalie Lowe says Katya Jones will make Nicola Adams ‘work hard’ as Katya says boxer is ‘too chilled’

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What a first week of Strictly! The pro number set the scene for an electric, fiery, energetic show.

It was incredible, choreographed by Jason Gilkison, he is such a God, he outshines himself every year. And those pros – just when you think they can’t get any better they come out with something like that! It was an afro party festival at its best.

For me there are a lot of confident, capable and competitive celebrities this year. We’re in for a massive treat.

Everyone is really applying themselves because they are in it for the long run. So many people applied themselves on that dance floor.

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Those who weren’t so natural owned it and those who were more natural smashed it out the park. Only one or two less confident performances out of ten, so for me that is one of the strongest lineups we’ve sen to date.

If someone’s lacking in one area, they gained in another so it’s a very even keel for a competition this year.

HRVY had a ridiculous start to his Strictly journey, I can’t wait to see where he goes with his routines within the next couple of weeks! His showmanship outdone his footwork. He had camera checks, loads of content, style, composure and loads of: ‘I’ve got this, Janette. Throw it all at me what’s next.’

I think he’s capable of absolutely anything. So watch this space!

My next knockout performance is Maisie. The routine was off the charts for me. For a week one performance doing Samba – which, let’s remember is the hardest Latin dance to do for any celebrity – I would give that a ten out of ten. It was very, very on par with HRVY’s level of performance.

She’s dancing in heels, she’s got every type of body rhytmicality and timing and performance in check. She was just incredible. For me it was faultless.

The routine had everything and the kitchen sink! Gorka Marquez threw a really difficult routine at her. She is also very capable and those two going to be the ones to watch.

My third favourite was Bill Bailey and Oti Mabuse. Oh my God! I literally in tears and I was almost wetting myself, I was just flabbergasted. Bill, for me, is the epitome of Strictly, never seen anyone work the floor like Bill Bailey – fun, fun, fun. Loved Craig’s comments – shameless!

No wonder Strictly’s so popular it brings laughter, tears, fun, sadness, emotion, creativity, it’s such a winning formula.

I was really intrigued to see Nicola and Katya for their first same-sex performance. It’s making history, Strictly’s never seen this before. I was really impressed with their performance, I think Katya did a really good job with their choreography, mixing up the roles is very, very difficult. But, I’d like to see Nicola work on her upper body I think she really needs to work on her frame. She’s got the performance element, she’s very confident and natural and calm and cool on the dance floor but she’s gonna need to really work hard at maintaining a picture-perfect performance from beginning to end. It was very good for week one but I’m excited about the room for improvement with Nicola.

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It was good, but I can see that Katya’s gonna crack the whip, week in week out and she mentioned a little something up in Claudia’s room that I think Claudia said: “You’re almost like opposites, you’re saying: ‘Chill, relax’ and Katya’s saying ‘let’s go again’” and Katya said: “A little too chilled for my liking”. That’s an interesting dynamic and one to watch.

It’s an interesting dynamic and I’ve had someone like that before. Funnily enough a boxer, they’re just very chilled some of them. I had a boxer in Australia and a boxer here. One was just like: ‘Let’s go’ and the other was like: ‘That will do’ and I was like: ‘No it won’t’. So it’s a really interesting dynamic.

Do you know what will be really interesting is because the standard’s so high, when you’re with someone who is a competitive sportsman, they will think: ‘Aha, maybe I can’t be so laid back’. Maybe she will remain laid back because she’s being true to herself and that’s who she is as a person.

But, when the competition gets tough and the competitive side comes out is when you can see a change in someone’s energy. So, they’re one to watch!

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