Bruno Tonioli Strictly praises Gavin

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 25 September 2010
Gavin Henson

Strictly contestant Gavin Henson

'Strictly Come Dancing' judge Bruno Tonioli expects rugby player Gavin Henson to do well in the BBC ballroom dance contest

Bruno Tonioli expects Gavin Henson to do well on 'Strictly Come Dancing'.

The Italian judge - who appears on the judging panel alongside Len Goodman, Craig Revel-Horwood and Alesha Dixon - admits he is expecting big things from the Welsh rugby ace, but never truly knows how contestants will do in the competition until he sees them perform live.

He said: "I think Gavin will be great, but you can't tell who the public will like and who the judges will like.

"People expected boxer Joe Calzaghe to do well but he was actually terrible.

"The public like to identify with contestants. I think that's what happened with winner Chris Hollins last year - he wasn't the best technical dancer but people really liked him."

Bruno has also revealed he is close friends with Simon Cowell, and confirmed that the apparent ratings war between 'Strictly' and Simon's 'X Factor' should not be taken too seriously.

He said: "There is a bit of friendly rivalry, but it's not serious because we know each other so well.

"Because we don't actually work together we can speak without any c**p. Many times I've asked for his advice and I know he will tell me honestly."

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