MARK RAMPRAKASH

Sportsman

Cricketer Mark is a formidable county cricket player, starting his career at Middlesex and moving on to Surrey, with achievements including the first man to score a century against all 18 county teams, the first man to average over 100 in two consecutive English seasons, and the first man to score over 150 runs in an innings in five consecutive matches. Selected for the England squad in 1991, he struggled to find form in the international game, and was in and out of the squad over the next few years, never achieving his potential, until the 1997 tour of West Indies when he scored 154 not out, and secured regular selection for the next few years.

Following in the footsteps of cricketer Darren Gough in series three of Strictly Come Dancing, Mark took part in series four of the series and was partnered with professional Karen Hardy. At first, Karen struggled to get much out of Mark as his shy nature and hard-working sporting background made for a quiet training room, but once she managed to get him out of his shell, there was no stopping them. Their first week Cha Cha Cha saw them at the top of the leaderboard with some very encouraging comments from the judges. A good Tango in week three and an excellent Paso Doble in week four followed, but it was the Salsa in week five that was to become an unforgettable piece of Strictly history. Dancing an energetic routine to "Hot, Hot, Hot", the couples microphone cables became entangled with the costumes and Karen had to call a halt to the dance, as she couldn't move away from Mark. Desperately begging Brucie to let him have another go, Mark's enthusiasm won him fans across the nation, as well as with the judges, and they scored four 9's for a fantastic routine. There were ups and downs for the couple throughout the rest of the series, but in week eleven, the newly introduced Argentine Tango was the final dance of the semi-final, and the electricity of the performance sparked out of the television screen, with the comment from Len that it was the first dance of the night that had deserved a place in the final, and winning them three 10's and a total score of 39 points, bring Karen to tears backstage. Better was still to come, though, with a reprise of their Salsa in the final scoring them the perfect 40 marks, and a jaw-dropping show dance getting a standing ovation from the judges and audience alike, and the public voted them series champions.

 

Strictly Come Dancing

Week Dance Song Judges scores Total
      CraigArleneLenBruno  
1 Cha Cha Cha Let's Get Loud 7 7 7 6 27
3 Tango Eleanor Rigby 7 8 8 9 32
4 Paso doble Scott & Fran's Paso Doble 8 9 9 9 35
5 Salsa Hot, Hot, Hot 9 9 9 9 36
6 American Smooth Orange Coloured Sky 8 9 7 9 33
7 Rumba Right Here Waiting 5 6 8 8 27
8 Viennese Waltz Piano Man 9 9 9 9 36
9 Foxtrot California Dreaming 7 7 7 7 28
9 Samba I Go To Rio 9 9 9 9 36
10 Waltz With You I'm Born Again 9 9 9 9 36
10 Jive Blue Suede Shoes 5 7 8 7 27
11 Quickstep Bye Bye Love 9 9 8 8 34
11 Argentine Tango Goldeneye 9 10 10 10 39
Final Tango Eleanor Rigby 8 8 9 9 34
Final Salsa Hot, Hot, Hot 10 10 10 10 40
Final Samba (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher And Higher 9 9 9 9 36
Christmas 2006 Salsa La Bamba 9 9 9 9 36
Christmas 2007 Jive I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day 9 9 10 10 38