'Countdown's Rachel Riley marries 'Strictly' dance partner Pasha Kovalev in Las Vegas

Albertina Lloyd
Entertainment reporter, Yahoo UK
Rachel Riley and Pasha Kovalev have eloped to Las Vegas (Credit: PA)

Rachel Riley and Pasha Kovalev have eloped to Las Vegas and married in a secret ceremony.

The 33-year-old Countdown presenter is pregnant with her first child and the couple - who met when they were paired on Strictly Come Dancing in 2013 - had previously said they had no plans to tie the knot.

But Riley shared a picture of the happy couple in front of a flower carousel in Sin City captioned: “Introducing the new Mr and Mrs Kovalev. We both said yes.”

A marriage certificate obtained by The Sun newspaper shows the couple - who recently starred together on Celebrity Gogglebox - were married on Friday.

Read more: 'Strictly's Pasha Kovalev fears for 'personal' photos of Rachel Riley after phone stolen

Riley announced she and Kovalev, 39, were expecting their first child on social media last month, in the form of a Countdown conundrum that read “R TINY MATE”.

The baby is due in December.

When Riley competed on Strictly Come Dancing in 2013 she was married to Jamie Gilbert who she met when they were both studying at Oxford University. But like so many, they fell victim to the ‘Strictly Curse’ announcing they were separating in November 2013, just a few months after she met her professional dance partner Kovalev.

Read more: Rachel Riley 'moved to tears' over support in fighting back at anti-semitic trolls

Russian-born dancer Kovalev - who announced in February he is quitting BBC dance show Strictly - was recently the victim of a mobile phone mugging outside the Sadler’s Wells Theatre in North London.

He is reported to be concerned for the safety of personal photographs he had of Riley on the device.

A witness said: “One second he was outside on the phone, the next moment the moped pair drove at him aggressively and totally disorientated him.

“They mounted the pavement and in a flash his phone was out of his hand. He was knocked off balance and very upset. As soon as it dawned on him what had happened he told people around him ‘The mobile is unlocked’.”

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