Natalie Cassidy has become the latest star to get the boot from Strictly Come Dancing, after losing to favourite Ricky Whittle in the dance-off.

Both couples were facing the dance-off for the first time, but after both had reprised their rock n’roll dance routines, the judges voted unanimously to save Ricky and dance partner Natalie Lowe.

However, the judges clearly regretted losing the former EastEnders star and her partner Vincent Simone.

“Congratulations to both couples for making it this far,” Alesha Dixon told the pair, “but the couple I would ike to keep are Ricky and Natalie.”

Len Goodman, meanwhile, said he would “miss his little Natalie” as he revealed that he would also have opted to save Ricky and Natalie Lowe.

Afterwards Cassidy said, “I’ve had the most amazing time and you know that.”

Four stars – Ricky Whittle, Chris Hollins, Laila Rouass and Ali Bastian – now remain in the competition.

Saturday’s show featured the couples performing either a Charleston or rock n’roll routine – the first time either routine had ever been featured on the show.

Earlier in the programme Natalie had been criticised by the judges for her rock n’roll dance, and had finished at the bottom of the scoreboard. Craig Revel Horwood described the dance as “very one-dimensional” while Alesha Dixon said, “It did have the energy but it was a tad clumsy.”

Whittle also had a disappointing night, with Craig complaining his rock n’roll routine “lacked a bit of pow” – but the other couples, who all performed Charlestons, fared very well indeed.

Chris Hollins, who kicked off the show with partner Ola Jordan, was described as “fabulous” by Len Goodman while Dixon remarked, “I saw a whole new side to you tonight, you’ve upped your game.”

And Ali and Brian once again won raves. “It was like being in 1920s Chicago,” while Len Goodman added, “I saw a different side to you, it was great.”