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Monday 17th February 2020

Strictly's James Cracknell recalls moment son had to call an ambulance after he had a seizure

James was having an epileptic seizure at the time

Eliminated Strictly Come Dancing star James Cracknell has opened up about the moment his frightened young son witnessed him having an epileptic seizure.

James' boy Croyde, who was 10 at the time, had to dial 999 for an ambulance after he fell ill at home as a consequence of his horrific brain injury.

Read more: James Cracknell's fans defend his 'wooden' Strictly Come Dancing performance

The Olympic rower, 47, was knocked off a bike by a petrol tanker in Arizona and, speaking to the Daily Mail, he said the aftermath made life very "difficult" for his eldest son.

At ten, you don’t want to see that. So for him it’s been...difficult.

Recalling that time in their lives, he said: "He was eight when the accident happened and he had a very different dad for the next few years.

"I had an epileptic seizure with him at home and he had to call the ambulance.

"At ten, you don’t want to see that. So for him it’s been...difficult."

James' accident happened in 2010 while he was filming for a TV show and, along with epilepsy, he was left with a changed personality and a short temper.

The Strictly star, who last weekend became the first of this year's contestants to be sent home, has since split with the wife of three children, writer and broadcaster Beverley Turner.

The couple had been married for 17 years but the accident put huge strain on the relationship.

Beverley later described James as being a completely different man to the one she was married to before his accident.

Following his elimination from Strictly Come Dancing, it was reported that James had stormed off and had a "furious rant" backstage. 

Read more: Strictly Come Dancing's Dianne Buswell will be dancing after accident during rehearsals 

But the sportsman, who was partnered with professional dancer Luba Mushtuk, later slammed the claim.

Taking to Twitter, he said: "I don’t reply to people’s comments but I’m not gonna let this one go.

"@LubaMushtuk & I had fun & our best dance but it wasn’t enough.

"I know I’m no John Travolta so to throw my toys out the pram would be stupid @bbcstrictly."

Strictly Come Dancing continues tonight at 7.10pm on BBC One.

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