Strictly’s Tess and Claudia issue heartfelt message to Katya and Nicola

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Strictly Come Dancing hosts Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman issued a heartfelt message to Katya and Nicola as they were forced to miss this week.

Professional dancer Katya, 31, tested positive for Covid-19 earlier this week, meaning that she and Nicola would have to isolate as part of government guidelines.

Addressing the news this evening, Tess said to viewers: "You may notice that there is one couple missing."

Claudia continued: "Nicola and Katya have had to withdraw from the competition after Katya tested positive for Covid-19. They both feel fine and are self-isolating separately following government guidelines."

(Image: BBC)

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"Now we know that you're watching and we want to say we're so sorry your time has come to an end and we are sending all of our love from everyone here at Strictly to you."

At the beginning of the series, Strictly confirmed that anyone who caught coronavirus during the competition would automatically be axed.

In her Instagram Stories ahead of this evening, Katya thanked fans for support and hinted that she and Nicola would be returning to dance.

(Image: BBC)

Katya Jones addressed her exit from Strictly on Instagram
(Image: Instagram)

This is despite the BBC insisting that the retired boxer is "banned" from making a comeback on the show as she would have an "unfair advantage".

She also cryptically suggested that there were "bigger things to come" in the near-future.

Katya told her fans: "Hi everyone, just wanted to come on here and say a big, big thank you for floods of messages and support. It really has been so lovely and it means so much to me and Nicola.

Katya and Nicola had to pull out of the competition after the pro tested positive for coronavirus
(Image: PA)

Katya admitted that she was heartbroken about what had happened
(Image: Instagram)

"I'm absolutely fine, as you know – I have no symptoms at all. I'm just isolating and I'm…"

Appearing choked up, Katya continued: "… gutted, heartbroken can't even describe my feelings. But we're so happy that we were able to do this. Hopefully it's the start of something bigger.

Katya hinted that they may still return to dance
(Image: Instagram)

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"Again, thank you so much to everybody who has supported us on the competition and now I've seen all your messages. I know I've not answered everybody but I'm going through them and I've seen them all."

In the next clip, Katya appeared much more upbeat as she exclaimed: "And maybe, just maybe, we will dance for you again together! One way or another. But meanwhile, please, please, please look after yourselves, look after others.

"Be safe – it's another reminder that it's all around us. Even when we don't realise."

Another change to the show tonight will be Anton Du Beke's appointment to the judging panel as he covers for Motsi Mabuse.

Motsi had to fly back to Germany after her dance studio was broken into, meaning that she will need to isolate for two weeks.

Wishing him good luck, Katya said: "So excited that Anton will be stepping in for Motsi's job whilst she's quarantining.

"I love that man to bits and I can't wait to see him tomorrow. Come on!"

*Strictly Come Dancing airs tonight at 7.10pm on BBC One