Strictly's Kevin Clifton says Maisie Smith in dance-off was sexist

‘People love a confident man but a confident girl gets labelled cocky’: Kevin Clifton claims Maisie Smith is a victim of sexism after she landed in the Strictly dance-off

Kevin Clifton has claimed that Maisie Smith is a victim of sexism after she landed in the Strictly Come Dancing dance-off on Sunday.

The professional dancer, 38, shared his shock at the EastEnders star, 20, being in the bottom two after the show and later shared his theory why this had happened.

Taking to Twitter on Monday, Kevin wrote: ‘People love a confident/ talented/ successful man but a confident girl gets labelled cocky.’

‘A lot of people don’t like confident females apparently’: Kevin Clifton has claimed that Maisie Smith is a victim of sexism after she landed in the Strictly Come Dancing dance-off on Sunday

Kevin also responded to tweets from other Strictly fans who agreed that confident male contestants can be treated differently compared to the female celebs.

After sharing his amazement at Maisie and her pro partner Gorka Marquez’s position, the star – who left the BBC show before this series – received several responses.

One person said: ‘@keviclifton I don’t understand why every year the public are b****y. And say they don’t like someone as a person. 

‘It isn’t a personality contest. It is a dancing contest. I for one love #Strictly. Nerves etc can make people come across as awkward.’

Bottom two: EastEnders star Maisie, 20, was up singer Max George, 32, in the dance-off, with the singer being sent home

Thoughts: Replying to tweets about Maisie’s result on Monday, Kevin penned ‘People love a confident/ talented/ successful man but a confident girl gets labelled cocky’

Replying to this tweet, Kevin said: ‘It’s usually a female who the audience PERCEIVE to be confident and will get unfairly labelled cocky or arrogant. Cos a lot of people don’t like confident females apparently’

Dozens of people commented on Kevin’s tweets to share their own thoughts on the comments Maisie has been receiving.

One person said: ‘I agree its really sad. She is a wonderful dancer with a lot of potential. Just hope this doesn’t knock her confidence to much for this week.’

While another added: ‘People thought Maisie was “too good” like… how can you be TOO good at a dance competition? She was amazing! 

‘Should be praised for that, the whole point of trying to win competitions is to be good, i’m rooting for her, HRVY and Bill!’ 

Perception: The professional dancer also said that female contestants who the audience ‘perceive’ as ‘confident and will get unfairly labelled cocky or arrogant’ in another tweet

Surprise: On Sunday night Kevin shared his shock at Maisie and Gorka being in the bottom two

However some disagreed, saying: ‘I don’t agree. I’m afraid male and female get equal dislike from me if they are over confident.’ 

Although Kevin is not in the current series of Strictly, he and Maisie danced together in the 2019 Children In Need special.

Maisie and Gorka won against Max George and Dianne Buswell, who were eliminated in the dance-off on Sunday evening’s show.  

Maisie earned 24 points out of 40 for her Cha Cha to Girls Just Want To Have Fun by Cyndi Lauper with dance partner Gorka. 

She had to dance off against Max, who was ultimately sent home after performing his American Smooth to It Had To Be You by Harry Connick Jr.

Opinions: Dozens of people commented on Kevin’s tweets to share their own thoughts on why some contestants are considered ‘cocky’ or ‘over confident’

Throwback: Although Kevin is not in the current series of Strictly, he and Maisie danced together in the 2019 Children In Need special 

And speaking after the show, judge Motsi Mabuse revealed that if she had been in the judging seat, she would have saved Max from elimination and sent home Maisie.

The Wanted singer, 32, landed in the bottom two with Maisie, with both Craig Revel Horwood and Anton voting to keep the actress  in the competition – while head judge Shirley would have voted for Max. 

The professional dancer, 39, told BBC Radio 2 on Monday that she would have sided with head Shirley and kept Max in, saying: ‘I saw that Max had a very difficult routine, he had to control himself quite a lot. 

‘If we remember last week with the Simpsons he was all jolly and I think he liked that role and this time he had to be back in control. 

Safe: After seeing the Maisie and Max perform again, the judges decided that the actress’ Cha-Cha-Cha to Girls Just Wanna Have Fun by Cyndi Lauper was enough to save her

Strictly Come Dancing: Max became the third celebrity to be eliminated from the show alongside his pro partner Diane Buswell

“I’m stuck here, I’m almost like Shirley, watching from the outside, maybe I might have saved Max. But you cannot see from the TV screen as well as you can sitting there and being a judge.’  

The EastEnders actress has also been accused of breaking social distancing rules backstage. 

There have been claims that BBC executives have banned contestants and dancers from partying after a series of COVID-19-related scares.

Contestants are said to have been told they are to take part in the series and nothing else after Maisie and her rumoured boyfriend HRVY, 21, were pictured breaking the show’s rules during filming for It Takes Two, getting a little too close for comfort.

According to The Sun, bosses are keeping an eye on the pair, fearing a romance could form and put social distancing rules at risk, after Katya Jones and Nicola Adams have already been forced to pull out of the show. 

A source said: ‘There is disappointment with HRVY and Maisie after their partying was exposed last week.

‘Contestants, cast and crew have always had a few drinks after the show to let off steam. But bosses have slapped a party ban on the youngsters and reminded them they are there for the show and nothing else.

‘Some older crew members have commented that they’re turning the show into Ibiza Weekender.’ 

Strict: Participants have been told they are to take part in the series and nothing else after Katya Jones [pictured with Nicola Adams] caught COVID-19 and had to leave the show 

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