Katya Jones is certainly no stranger to a Strictly Come Dancing controversy.
The Russian pro dancer, who has been part of the BBC show since 2016, has delighted us with her impressive routines and ability to turn even those celebs with two left feet into dancing sensations.
She somehow managed to take hapless politician Ed Balls all the way to a sixth place finish during her first series and won the contest the following year with outsider Joe McFadden.
While Katya has delighted us on the dance floor, she has also hit the headlines for some of her antics away from it.
This weekend, Katya was at the centre of more controversy this weekend when viewers accused celeb partner Adam Peaty of ‘almost’ kissing her at the end of their sexy Argentine Tango.
Here is a look at some other Strictly scandals involving Katya.
Ed Balls outrage
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Katya arrived with a bang on Strictly Come Dancing while partnered with former Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls in 2016.
Ed was labelled a ‘novelty act’, compared to the likes of X Factor’s Honey G and Jedward, but managed to keep surviving week on week.
Despite regularly finding himself bottom of the leaderboard, Ed kept plowing through and managed to avoid the dreaded dance-off thanks to votes from the public.
But it soon became clear that even the judges were conspiring against Ed, with Darcey Bussell saying she wanted him “out” a day before he had even danced.
Ed, who wowed with his famous Gangnam Style routine, did eventually get the boot but finished in a very respectable sixth place – and is still good friends with Katya.
In 2018, Ed was asked about the Strictly ‘curse’ but claimed he was far too old due to being the same age as Katya’s dad and wife Yvette Cooper said it would only happen “in his dreams”.
Speaking on Lorraine, he said: “There is definitely a Strictly curse, year after year. Luckily there's an age cut off and I was well above the age.
“Yvette view was always, when she got asked about it, ‘in his dreams’. I’m afraid that’s where it was. Katya’s dad and I were the same age.”
Seann Walsh ‘kissgate’
Katya’s biggest controversy was most definitely the Seann Walsh ‘kissgate’ scandal back in October 2018.
The pro dancer was snapped kissing the comedian, on his ex-girlfriend Rebecca Humphries' birthday, outside a London pub –
A witness said at the time: “They were snogging like a pair of teenagers and didn’t seem to care who might see them.”
Just a few days after the pictures emerged, Rebecca dumped Seann in spectacular fashion with a damning public statement.
Seann and Katya publicly apologised for the kiss on Strictly spin-off show It Takes Two, but they were slammed for the “robotic” statement by fans.
He attempted to play down his mistake and even hinted that there had been cracks in the relationship before his kiss with Katya.
Katya, who insisted at the time that her marriage to Neil was secure, said: “Yes obviously I apologise, and I can’t apologise enough to everyone who it hurt and involved.
“But, the main thing, me and Neil are absolutely fine and that's what matters to me the most right now and focusing on my job and doing it as professionally I can.”
Neil Jones marriage break-up
Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
The pair initially stood by each other, but almost a year later in 2019, Neil and Katya announced they were divorcing.
However, they insisted the kiss-gate scandal had nothing to do with the decision to end their 11-year relationship.
In a joint statement, they said: “As our fans and loyal supporters you are really important to us and so we wanted to let you know some news.
“After 11 years, we have made the mutual decision to separate.
“We will always love each other, just in a different way as friends. This will never change what a great team we make and we are really proud of everything we have achieved together.
“Our shared love of dance means we will keep working and dancing together as well as exploring individual projects. No matter what we do we will always support and respect each other.
“We wish one another every happiness and we will remain the best of friends. We are really looking forward to getting back to the ballroom and can’t wait to keep on dancing. Lots of love from us both.”
A spokeswoman for Neil and Katya made clear the split had been a recent decision and not based on the smooching scandal.
Despite the break-up, Neil and Katya continued to by friendly towards each other in the following months and to this day they are still seemingly on good terms.
They frequently leave messages under each other’s social media posts – and have both paid tribute to each other on their respective birthdays.
Nicola Adams forced exit
Strictly viewers were thrilled when Katya and boxing champion Nicola Adams became the first same-sex couple in the show’s history.
But their journey came to an early and abrupt end in last year’s series when they were forced to pull out after Katya tested positive for Covid-19.
Katya tested positive with symptoms and had to self-isolate for 10 days, while Nicola tested negative and had to quarantine for 14 days after being in direct contact with her.
In a heartfelt message, Nicola confessed she was “absolutely devastated” to be leaving but praised Katya for being the best dance partner she could have asked for.
“She pushed me way out of my comfort zone and it's been an incredible experience,” said Nicola.
“I'm gutted to be out of the competition but in these unprecedented times and as frustrating as it is, the COVID measures in place are to keep everyone safe, and I'm doing what I can to help.”
Katya admitted she was “heartbroken” by the circumstances and dubbed Nicola “her hero” as she uploaded a selfie of them together.
The pro dancer added: “Dancing with Nicola has been an absolute inspiration. She’s given her all each and every week and we were so excited to create more dances in the competition.
“Of course, I’m devastated to leave this way but I’ve made a friend for life and loved every moment of this special journey. I'd like to wish good luck to all the remaining couples!”
Adam Peaty ‘almost kiss’
Many Strictly viewers were in shock on Saturday night after the explosive climax of Adam and Katya’s sexy Argentine Tango.
The pair really turned up the heat in the studio with their incredible routine, which ended with Adam appearing to lean in towards Katya while staring into her eyes before pulling away.
“Did Adam just go to kiss Katya and then remember they're on TV?!” one widely shared tweet asked.
It was a sentiment which was held by many at home – with the moment being labelled as the ‘almost kiss’.
Olympian Adam is currently in a relationship with girlfriend Eiri Munro, with whom he shares a one-year-old son, while Katya is understood to be single.
Despite the reaction from some viewers, it’s clear Eiri is seeing the funny side as she posted a spoof video of herself crying on TikTok.
“Watching your boyfriend almost kiss another woman on live tv… Finding out 10 million people also watched it live.”
After the furore, Adam took to Twitter to slam gossip about the nature of his partnership with Katya.
“My favourite dance so far. Thank you to everyone who has sent supporting messages! I loved it,” he tweeted, before adding: “To everyone who wants to see what they want, your comments have real life consequences. I will not be overcome or lowered by your gossip. Protect your energy.
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