‘Not a tough choice’ Lorraine Kelly ‘thrilled’ after skipping National Television Awards

NTAs: Lorraine Kelly reveals she can't attend the ceremony

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Lorraine Kelly had to miss the National Television Awards 2021 last week, despite the fact that her co-stars had been nominated for an award. The 61-year-old presenter has since revealed that it was “not a tough choice”.

Lorraine was given the opportunity to interview American tennis star Billie Jean King for her ITV breakfast show, but the chat had to take place at a certain time.

The only free slot happened to be at the same time as the NTAs, which took place on Thursday night at London’s O2 Arena.

The TV personality took to Twitter last night to inform fans that the interview would be aired on today’s Lorraine.

She said the legendary sports star, who won 39 grand slam titles during her heyday, had some advice for British tennis player Emma Raducanu, who won the US Open at the weekend.

The 18-year-old made history as the first qualifier to win a grand slam and the first British women to win a major title in 44 years.

Talking about her decision to skip the awards ceremony, Lorraine wrote on Twitter: “For me not a tough choice!

“So thrilled to have 45 minutes with Billy Jean King – hear her advice for @EmmaRaducanu on tomorrow’s show 9am @ITV,” she added, in view of her 654,800 followers.

“Good for you,” one follower wrote in the comments section of her post.

“Huge childhood hero of mine and got my love of tennis from BJK. She’s still a hero now. A huge fan of [American] people, as my other love was Leonard Nimoy,” another added, referring to the late US actor who was best known for playing Spock in Star Trek

Ahead of Thursday’s episode, Lorraine told her fellow ITV colleagues Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby that she would not be attending the NTAs.

The presenting duo were nominated for the best Daytime programme award for their TV show This Morning.

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“Will we be seeing you there?” Phil asked Lorraine via video link.

“No, I’m interviewing an amazing, big legend. And the only time we can do it is right when the NTAs are on,” she went on to explain.

“So I’ll be sad to not be there applauding.”

Holly then pressed the presenter for more details about who she would be interviewing.

“It’s Billie Jean King. How exciting is that?” Lorraine remarked.

At the star-studded ceremony, Holly and Phil were announced as the winners of their category.

They beat rival shows Loose Women, The Chase, and The Repair Shop.

Fellow ITV star Kate Garraway also scooped an award for her Finding Derek documentary.

She took to the stage to collect the Authored Documentary accolade with an emotional speech.

Lorraine said she was “so proud” of the 54-year-old.

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