Strictly’s Annabel Croft takes aim at Wimbledon’s ‘life-threatening technology’

Annabel Croft says ‘competitive’ side will come out on Strictly

Strictly Come Dancing 2023 contestant Annabel Croft has given her verdict on the use of AI commentary after it was trialled by IBM on the Wimbledon website and app this year.

The 57-year-old sports star, who was the youngest British tennis player to compete at Wimbledon for almost a century at the age of 15 in 1984, slammed the technology as an “stiff and emotionless”.

Alongside many other tennis stars and commentators, she criticised the competition’s move towards artificial intelligence this year.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme, she explained: “It’s a race against the robot for your job.

“Listening to that, it was very stiff, it was emotionless, no feelings at all.

READ MORE: Strictly’s Annabel Croft wows in ageless snaps decades on from tennis career

“Whoever is taking the decision to put a robot on to commentary and, of course, into the wider context of all jobs in life: this is going to kill humanity,” she continued.

“I feel like we all need to throw our phones in the river and stop our brains being overtaken by AI.”

The British tennis icon added that she hoped viewers would speak out against the use of AI commentary, pleading: “I really hope somebody can stop it.”

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Annabel recently revealed that she only found out she had been picked for Strictly “days” before it was announced.

The star has claimed she hasn’t danced for a number of years, save for the occasional TikTok routine with her daughters Charlie, 27, and Lily, 25.

She has also expressed how keen she is to join in on the “joyfulness” of Strictly just three months after her beloved husband Mel Coleman died from cancer.

This year’s line-up includes Layton Williams, Nigel Harman, Jody Cundy, Ellie Leach, Nikita Kanda, Angela Rippon and Krishnan Guru-Murthy, Bobby Brazier.

Les Dennis, Annabel Croft, Amanda Abbington, Adam Thomas, Zara McDermott, Angela Scanlon and Eddie Kadire are all also taking part.

The first live show for Strictly Come Dancing looks set to air on Saturday, September 23 on BBC One.

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