Annabel Croft says Strictly has brought 'light' amid 'very dark time' after husband's death

The star said her dance partner Johannes Radebe had been 'an angel'.

Annabel Croft and Johannes Radebe - Strictly Come Dancing 2023. (BBC)
Annabel Croft and Johannes Radebe are partners on Strictly Come Dancing 2023. (BBC)

What did you miss?

Annabel Croft has said her Strictly pro partner Johannes Radebe has brought “light” into her life at a “very dark time” as she grieves her late husband.

The tennis ace’s husband Mel Coleman died in May at the age of 60 after battling cancer. The pair had been married for 30 years and share three children.

Speaking on Good Morning Britain, Croft admitted she didn’t know where she would be right now without the BBC ballroom contest.

What, how, and why?

“It has come at such an incredibly difficult time in my life, a very dark time, but you have brought so much light to my life, honestly, you have been an angel, so thank you,” she said as she turned to Radebe.

Annabel Croft and Johannes Radebe on Good Morning Britain. (ITV screengrab)
Annabel Croft and Johannes Radebe on Good Morning Britain. (ITV screengrab)

Asked if having Strictly to throw herself into had helped in the wake of her loss, she replied: “Oh there is no question about it.

“I don’t know where I would be if I hadn’t had Strictly Come Dancing at this period of time because it has been such a distraction away from terrible grief and you know, I had no concept of what grief was.

“So to be able to get up in the morning and to have a purpose rather than just sobbing at home, even though that still happens.”

Croft continued: “And also to use your body I think.

"I’m an ex athlete so I’m aware of the body… but to be able to use your body to get things out has been really special and it’s made me realise how amazing dancing is, it’s incredible.

"I just wish I’d had it more in my routine generally.”

Annabel Croft lost her husband this year. (Getty Images)
Annabel Croft lost her husband this year. (Getty Images)

What else happened on Good Morning Britain?

The star also said she wants to carry on dancing after her time on the TV show comes to an end.

“I’m quite old now, I’ m 57, but I feel like my body is in the best shape actually that it has ever been in,” she said.

Croft also shared a few titbits about her upcoming Couple’s Choice routine, which she and Radebe will perform to the song Wings by Birdy.

Strictly Come Dancing 2023,14-10-2023,TX4 - LIVE SHOW,Johannes Radebe, Annabel Croft ,BBC,Guy Levy
Annabel Croft said Johannes Radebe had brought 'light' into her life. (BBC)

“I’ve really enjoyed it because it is very different,” she said.

“And obviously it has meaning behind the song so there have been a few moments where it brings up a lot of emotion.”

Strictly is on BBC One on Saturday 4 November at 7.05pm.

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