IT LOOKS like commentator Matt Chapman doesn’t, ahem… rink much of this year’s Dancing On Ice contestants, as he’s has decided to skate off into the sunset after only one episode.
Matt, who usually sizes up racing fillies rather than celeb figure skaters, made his debut on the rebooted reality show at the weekend, but he came in for some stick from viewers unsure about his delivery.
Comments ranged from ‘annoying’ and ‘cringe-worthy’ to ‘legendary’, but the general feeling was that he needed to ‘reel it in a bit’ and he was ‘just too OTT’.
To be fair to poor Matt, he was clearly still finding his feet on the very differently paced show, as he tweeted later: ‘Hey people thanks for loads of kind comments @dancingonice. Quite a night. And for those thinking: “Who the hell was that?” Will try to win you over in next 9 shows. #life #fun #newchallenge.’
But it seems he changed his mind about that as he’s now told The Sun newspaper he has ‘decided to hang up my skates, leave the rink and return to the turf’.
He added: ‘I wish the show the best of luck for the rest of the run.’
An ITV spokesman confirmed Matt is off, but did not give a reason for his sudden departure — although it has been reported that the move is down to a scheduling clash.
The spokesman wished Matt ‘all the very best’ and said he would be back reporting on the races at the weekend. They did not announce who would be taking over this Sunday.
Short-lived Matt replaced the late Tony Gubba, who had appeared on every series of Dancing On Ice up until his death in 2013.
The new series has seen Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield return as presenters, while the judging panel consists of former Olympic skating champions Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean, choreographer Jason Gardiner and Diversity dancer Ashley Banjo.
The celebrity contestants taking to the ice rink include singer Cheryl Baker, former Great British Bake Off champion Candice Brown, Love Island winner Kem Cetinay and Coronation Street actors Antony Cotton and Brooke Vincent.