Strictly Come Dancing's Janette Manrara pays tribute to husband Aljaz as he quits show

Janette Manrara (L) and Aljaz Skorjanec attend the National Television Awards in 2019
Janette Manrara paid tribute to her husband's Aljaz Skorjanec's nine years on Strictly. (Getty Images)

Janette Manrara has expressed her "sadness" that husband Aljaz Skorjanec has quit Strictly Come Dancing, saying he is what the show "is all about".

The 32-year-old Slovenian dancer has become the latest pro performer to quit the BBC dance show. Over his nine years he danced with celebrity partners including Dragon's Den star Sara Davies and model Abbey Clancy, with whom he won the glitterball in 2013.

Strictly: It Takes Two co-host Manrara, 38, shared on Instagram: "I cannot express the sadness in my heart to see @aljazskorjanec say goodbye to @bbcstrictly, but at the same time there is so much joy in my heart for what he has brought to the show these past nine years."

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She went on: "As his wife and best friend, I could not be happier to know that he made so many smile during his time in Strictly.

"He IS STRICTLY and what Strictly is all about; taking someone who wants to learn to dance, and making them truly fall in love with it."

Manrara added: "All good things come to an end, but with every ending comes new beginnings.

Aljaz Skorjanec and Janette Manrara perform onstage during the BBC Strictly Come Dancing Launch at Broadcasting House in London.
Aljaz Skorjanec and Janette Manrara are professional dance partners as well as husband and wife. (Getty Images)

"Thank you @aljazskorjanec for always being my biggest inspiration in any and everything that I do. May that long continue. I love you, and you and I will forever and always 'keep dancing'."

Skorjanec announced on social media: "A little while ago I made the tough decision that Strictly 2021 would be my last...

"Being a part of a group of professionals that inspire and push you to be better every step of the way is humbling and I will carry that inspiration with me forever."

Strictly executive producer Sarah James said: "We are so sad to be saying goodbye to Aljaž after almost a decade as a professional dancer on Strictly Come Dancing.

"He will be missed by his Strictly family, both on and off the dancefloor, and we wish him only the very best as he embarks on his next chapter."

Strictly Come Dancing dancers Aljaz Skorjanec and Janette Manrara at Key 103 Live at Manchester Arena in 2017.
Strictly Come Dancing dancers Aljaz Skorjanec and Janette Manrara married in 2017. (Getty Images)

The ballroom and Latin champion and Manrara are professional dance partners. They became engaged in 2015 and married in 2017.

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Manrara herself stepped down as a professional dancer on Strictly last year after taking over from Zoe Ball as co-host of BBC2 Strictly spin-off show It Takes Two with Rylan Clark-Neal.

Watch: Aljaz Skorjanec and celebrity partner Sara Davies on It Takes Two