Strictly 2019 fans in tears as James Cracknell explains how horrific brain injury stopped him learning Luba's dance steps and got him booted off the show

STRICTLY Come Dancing viewers were in tears as James Cracknell explained how his horrific brain injury stopped him from learning partner Luba Mushtuk's dance steps – making him the first celeb to be booted from the show.

The 47-year-old rower previously confessed that he was devastated to have let the professional dancer down following their elimination at the weekend.

Appearing on It Takes Two last night, James detailed how the tragic bike accident that almost claimed his life in 2010 impacted his ability to remember the steps.

Speaking to host Rylan Clark-Neal, James said: "One of the reasons why I did it is actually people's perceptions of what you can do after a pretty serious accident are limited.

"And if you listen to people putting limits on you for whatever it’s for you're going to hit that ceiling.

"For me it's a very structured way of learning. I needed to know the steps before progressing.

"Then Luba says said you have to dance to music with me. You can’t go and learn the steps on your own.

"The difference in the way I learned from the first to second dance was realising it's more than just the ABC of doing it.

"You have to do it with someone get some emotion across and just do it."

In July 2010, James was hit from behind in Arizona by a petrol tanker while cycling during an attempt to cycle, row, run and swim from Los Angeles to New York within 18 days.

His cycle helmet was "shorn in two" and he suffered a contrecoup injury to the frontal lobes of his brain.

The injuries had a serious impact on his memory, ability to learn and also left him with epilepsy and changes to his personality.

In addition to sending his vocabulary to "below average", James also developed a short temper.

As Luba heaped praise on her celebrity partner, viewers at home took to Twitter to share their emotional response to James' honest remarks.

One wrote: "Omg.. I'm crying at James and Luba on #ItTakesTwo even though I agree with the decision.

"I'd be so gutted to be first out yet he was so humble."

Viewers heaped praise on the 'inspirational' star

A second added: "The limitations put on people after a serious accident, especially a brain injury, are colossal. Thank you @jamescracknell for inspiring people living with brain injury."

Another praised: "I’m in tears watching James Cracknell leaving Strictly Come Dancing. People who have gone through the injury he sustained need a hero. He’s just that."

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