The 14 celebrities in Strictly Come Dancing 2010 have performed competitively for the first time this series, as an elimination looms.

This week the contestants performed either a foxtrot or a salsa in a bid to remain in the competition.

And there was a three way tie at the top of the leaderboard, with Scott Maslen, Kara Tointon and Pamela Stephenson all scoring an impressive 32 out of 40.

EastEnders star Scott wowed the judges with an energetic salsa with his partner Natalie Lowe. “It was high energy and the rhythm was good,” Len Goodman told him. “I think you did a really good job,” Alesha Dixon added, “I hope you keep working hard.”

Meanwhile Len praised Pamela Stephenson for her “confidence” in her salsa, while Craig Revel Horwood added, “You went off like a firecracker, I couldn’t quite believe it.”

Kara’s foxtrot also received some of the best reviews of the night. “Whatever you do, keep doing it,” Bruno Tonioli told her, “it’s working well.”

Matt Baker and Aliona Vilani, who kicked off the show, also fared well with their foxtrot and missed out on the top spot on the scoreboard by just one point.

“You’re beginning to get on my wick a bit,” Len admitted, “you’re not supposed to be this good this early.”

And Jimi Mistry and dance partner Flavia Cacace made a good showing with their foxtrot, the final dance of the night.

“It excites me what you’re going to do next,” Alesha said, “I think you’re one to watch in this competition.”

There were also improvements from Tina O’Brien, Patsy Kensit, who received warm praise for her salsa, and Goldie, who scored 26 out of 40 for his foxtrot.

However it wasn’t such a good night for Paul Daniels and Peter Shilton, who found themselves at the lower end of the scoreboard once again.

“We saw some fun,” Len said of Peter’s salsa with partner Erin Boag. “There was some chemistry but a lot of it was just standing around.”

Gavin Henson, meanwhile, delivered a disappointing salsa following his promising performance on last weekend’s show.

“If it were about abdominals darling you would win,” Craig pointed out, “but unfortunately it’s about dancing.”

And once again Anne Widdecombe finished bottom of the heap, after she had performed her salsa with Anton du Beke – and even managed to score a paltry one point from Craig.

“There is not one word in the English language to describe what 10 million people have just witnessed,” he said of her routine.

The results will be announced on Sunday and for the first time at this stage in the competition will be decided entirely on public vote rather than dance-off.