Jody Cundy says he no longer fears he will need to pull out of Strictly

Paralympian Jody Cundy has said “fears” he might have to pull out of Strictly Come Dancing, following a trip to the hospital during movie week, have “gone”.

Whilst he was learning the Viennese waltz for the BBC One show, the athlete took a trip to the hospital after his leg got infected, which he said was to do with sweat build-up between his limb and prosthetic leg.

After his performance on October 7, Cundy received an overall score of 20 from the judges and placed bottom of the leader board with professional dance partner Jowita Przystal, who won the Glitterball Trophy in 2022 with wildlife cameraman Hamza Yassin.

Speaking about whether he fears he might have to pull out of the show if the trouble with his leg continues, Cundy said: “When it was bad, and I couldn’t put my leg on, there was worries that I probably wouldn’t be able to dance or whatever, and wasn’t really sure where we went from there.

“But thankfully, I managed to put my leg back on the Friday (October 6) morning. And all of those fears have kind of gone now. So it’s back to doing the hard work and learning to dance.”

Discussing how his leg is doing now, he said: “All good actually. I’m back on two feet again, so that’s always a positive. I’ve been on two feet all week. So we’re just making sure that we look after my leg a little bit more now.

“I think the back-to-back training, sort of three weeks in, I think did damage to it – but I was wearing my leg in a way that I’ve never really worn it before.

“So it just getting hot and sweaty and staying hot and sweaty all day. It’s a silicone liner so it basically doesn’t breathe, so if I spend seven hours training on it, the sweat just kind of festers in there.

Strictly Come Dancing 2023
Jody Cundy (BBC)

“We just have breaks now, we clean it up and make sure it’s all okay, so it’s just making sure it doesn’t have the conditions that we can have any problems again.”

Despite his determination he and his partner came bottom of the leaderboard again on Saturday with their energetic salsa filled with dramatic lifts and flips.

Cundy, celebrating his 45th birthday on Saturday, scored 19 points for his dance to Bellini’s Samba de Janeiro.

Judge Craig Revel Horwood said it “lacked fluidity” but hailed the sportsman for the lifts.

Motsi Mabuse noted that he started strong, with Pryztal ripping open his shirt, but became more “shy” as the performance went on and encouraged him to be more confident.

Discussing the upcoming Sunday results show, he said: “I really don’t want to go home this weekend… I’ve really got into the flow of doing this.

“I feel like I’m only just scratching the surface of learning to dance. We’ve done a couple of dances now and I’ve started to get the hang of it. So the idea of (maybe) not being here next week is quite disheartening.”

Strictly Come Dancing: The Results will air on BBC One at 7.15pm on Sunday and Strictly Come Dancing returns next Saturday on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.