Britain’s Got Talent dancer Paddy Jones has defended her participation on the show, following the discovery she has already won a Spanish TV talent contest.
The 79-year-old great-grandmother and her 40-year-old partner Nico Espinosa were the first act to hear the golden buzzer, after their high-energy routine convinced judge Amanda Holden to send them straight through to the live shows.
But they found themselves surrounded by controversy, after it was revealed that the pair triumphed in a similar show in Spain, Tu Si Que Vales (You Are Worth It), in 2009.
Paddy said that their former victory shouldn’t count against them, telling the Daily Mail: “Surely other people do this as well and go in for all sorts of competitions.
“Nico and I haven’t gone on to BGT with thoughts of gaining goodness knows what. We have gone into it for the pleasure of being able to dance and letting people see what we can do.”
Speculation was sparked that the duo were head-hunted by the British show after their Spanish success, although a spokesman for the ITV show denied the claims.
“None of the judging panel knew of Paddy before her audition and her act was a complete surprise to them all,” he told Metro.
Tu Si Que Vales is not part of the Got Talent franchise and is not owned by Simon Cowell’s production company Syco.
Paddy, who began dancing when she was 69 after her husband died, was initially given the red buzzer by Simon, but their jaw-dropping lifts and spins impressed the judges and won an apology from Simon.
“I am flabbergasted to have got this far. I am not expecting the impossible. I am ploughing ahead with it and enjoying it as much as I can,” said retired dental nurse Paddy.