By Naomi Clarke, PA Entertainment Reporter
Singer Rachel Stevens has told of her frustration at not being able to rehearse after fracturing her wrist while training for Dancing On Ice.
The former S Club 7 star, 43, who sustained the injury last month, was due to be among the second batch of celebrities taking to the ice this Sunday, but ITV announced on Wednesday she will not skate due to the break.
Speaking after the news, Stevens, who is partnered with professional Brendyn Hatfield, said her wrist is “healing really well” and she hopes to make her skating debut in week three of the show.
She said: “I’ve had amazing advice and support from all the medical team but, unfortunately, I’ve missed a chunk of ice time, which has been frustrating.
“I’m so excited to get back on, and me and Brendan have been doing everything we can off-ice, and have been working so hard so that we are fighting fit when we get back on the ice, which I can’t wait for.
“I just feel so grateful to still be able to be in the show and be a part of it.”
Stevens is hoping to get the all-clear from doctors so she can return to the ice this week.
While she said getting hurt was “frustrating”, she accepted the threat of injury when learning to figure skate is a “risk you take”.
She said: “It’s such a balance, getting to learn the basics and making sure you’re strong and you’re fit, but also pushing yourself enough that you can get out of your comfort zone.”
Stevens, who finished second on Strictly Come Dancing in 2008, said her experience as a pop star and on Strictly “definitely helps” – but feels performing on ice is an entirely new skill.
She said: “I think the main thing about this show is that you’ve just got to bring yourself to this show.
“And we’ve all got our different backgrounds. It definitely helps for sure, there’s no doubt about it, but when you take it onto the ice, it’s a whole different kettle of fish.
“So we’re all learning this incredible skill from scratch, pretty much.”
Six of the competition’s 12 couples took to the ice over the weekend, with Brendan Cole and Kimberly Wyatt topping the leaderboard.
The other five celebrities – Connor Ball, Ben Foden, Liberty Poole, Regan Gascoigne and Stef Reid – are due to make their debut on the rink this Sunday.