One of the Strictly Come Dancing professional dancers has been tipped to replace departing judge Darcy Bussell.

The 49-year-old announced on Wednesday that she would be quitting the show to ‘concentrate on other commitments’.

She assured fans she was leaving on good terms with the BBC but later sources claimed Darcey wanted a hefty pay rise and was fed up of all the soap style drama that comes with the show.

Fellow judge, Craig Revel Horwood rubbished these claims though, insisting to the Mirror that Darcey had always had “a great time” on the show and that any whispers of a pay dispute were “absolute rubbish”.

And while Strictly have yet to announce her replacement, one of the show’s star dancers has been tipped to take over.

According to bookmakers, Oti Mabuse is the favourite with 4-1 odds.

The 28-year-old has previous judging experience on the BBC show The Greatest Dancer.

Coral’s Harry Aitkenhead said, “Oti is definitely a contender to replace Darcey on the Strictly panel.

“She proved incredibly popular making the switch to captain on The Greatest Dancer from Strictly pro and we make her just a 4-1 shot to return to the show now as a judge.”

Oti, from Pretoria in South Africa, is a champion Latin and ballroom dancer and has been part of Strictly since 2015.

She was the runner up in 2017 with partner Danny Mac.

Twitter users have expressed their hope that Oti will take over the reins.

One said, “You can’t have enough Oti in your life”, while another gushed how “super sweet and talented” she is.

Another favourite to take over from Darcey is Karen Hardy, who was a hot contender for Shirley Ballas’s head judge job back in 2016.

The bookies have her at 2-1.

Karen, 48, won the show back in 2006 with Mark Ramprakash and sometimes fills in for the judges on the Strictly Live Tour.

From our sister site womanandhome. Words by Hayley Coyle.