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Manchester Evening News
Manchester Evening News
Ellie Kemp

ITV The Games: Who are the celebrities in the line-up and where you know them from

Twelve famous faces will be pushed to their sporting limits across a week of live shows on ITV. The Games, hosted by Holly Willoughby and Freddie Flintoff, will see celebrities go head-to-head in events including 100-meter sprint, diving and cycling.

Six male and six female stars, from the likes of Emmerdale and Coronation Street to Strictly Come Dancing and The Wanted, have undergone weeks of intensive training, will battle it out to win the most medals.

One male and one female winner will be crowned at the end of the week of live show's which begin on ITV on Monday night at 9pm. Former professional footballer and presenter Alex Scott will join Holly and Freddie as trackside reporter while former professional football player and presenter Chris Kamara will take up the role of commentator.

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As well as live coverage of the events, each episode will feature the celebrities' preparation as they’re taught the sports from scratch by some of the UK’s top coaches. Here are the stars taking part in The Games, and where you've seen them before...

Olivia Attwood

Olivia Attwood (ITV)

Olivia Attwood appeared on the third series of reality dating show Love Island, where she coupled up with Chris Hughes and placed third. The 31-year-old went on to become a regular cast member of ITVBe's The Only Way Is Essex and stars in Olivia Meets Her Match, which chronicles her life with footballer fiancée Bradley Dack.

The pair had dated prior to Olivia's Love Island appearance and went on to eventually rekindle their relationship after the show ended. Olivia and Bradley, who used to live in a luxurious Manchester flat, got engaged during a trip to Dubai in 2019 and are planning to tie the knot next year.

Phoenix Brown

Phoenix Gulzar-Brown (ITV)

Phoenix Brown is an influencer and made her modelling debut this year with George at Asda. The 23-year-old is the daughter of Scary Spice Mel B and Dutch dancer Jimmy Gulzar.

Phoenix, who grew up in the United States, also works with charity Women's Aid. She visits schools and colleges as an ambassador and has launched her own t-shirt design as part of the It's Not Our Fault campaign.

Phoenix recently opened up about living in an abusive household at the hands of her step-father and Mel B's ex-husband Stephen Belafonte - claims Mr Belafonte has repeatedly denied.

Kevin Clifton

Kevin Clifton (ITV)

Kevin Clifton was a professional dancer on ITV's Strictly Come Dancing for seven years, making his debut in 2013. He was partnered with TV presenter Stacey Dooley in the 2018 series. The pair won the competition - and eventually each other's hearts.

Kevin was previously married to fellow Strictly pro Karen Hauer, but in March 2018 the couple announced their separation. Not long after the 2018 series finished, it was confirmed that Kevin and Stacey were going steady. But the pair were careful about not dating while on the show, reports BedfordshireLive.

Kevin quit Strictly the following year after landing his dream role in the West End production of Strictly Ballroom.

Max George

Max George (ITV)

Max George is best known for being the lead singer of boyband The Wanted. At the height of their fame, The Wanted scored two UK number one hits and sold more than ten million records, including Glad You Came and Chasing The Sun.

The 33-year-old, who was born and bred in Manchester, started out as a footballer for Preston North End, but pursued music after an injury cut his career short. He made his acting debut in American musical series Glee in 2015, playing the role of Vocal Adrenaline leader Clint.

He is in an on-off relationship with Stacey Giggs, the ex-wife of footballer Ryan Giggs.

Chelcee Grimes

Chelcee Grimes (ITV)

Chelcee Grimes is a singer-songwriter and footballer, who has penned hits for the likes of Dua Lipa, Kylie Minogue and Little Mix. The 30-year-old, from Aigburth, Liverpool, has also played football for Fulham, Tottenham Hotspur and Merseyrail Ladies FC.

As if her career isn't impressive enough, Chelcee also co-presents BBC Two's MOTDx and has hosted several mini-series for BT Sport, as well as commentating the semi-finals of Eurovision 2021 for the UK. She recently participated in the reality competition series Freeze the Fear with Wim Hof.

She previously dated Love Island star Megan Barton-Hanson.

Josh Herdman

Josh Herdman is best known for playing Gregory Goyle in the Harry Potter film series. He was 13 years old when he was cast as villain Draco Malfoy's sidekick in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. The actor appeared in the 2018 film Robin Hood alongside Taron Egerton, Jamie Foxx and Jamie Dornan.

The 35-year-old is also an MMA fighter, launching his career in 2016 after five years of jiujitsu training. He described his love for MMA and said the sport is "raw, exciting and unpredictable".

Christine McGuinness

Christine McGuiness (ITV)

Christine McGuiness is a model and TV personality, having appeared in reality series The Real Housewives of Cheshire between 2018 and 2020. The 34-year-old shares three children, twins Penelope and Leo, eight, and daughter Felicity, five, with TV presenter husband Paddy McGuiness.

The mum-of-three, from Blackpool, opened up about all three of her children being diagnosed with autism last year - and revealed that she had also been diagnosed with the condition herself. Christine starred in a documentary alongside Paddy last year to raise awareness about autism.

Colson Smith

Colson Smith (ITV)

Colson Smith has played Craig Tinker on the ITV soap Coronation Street since he was 11 years old. The son of Beth Sutherland, Craig's storylines have seen him date girlfriend Bethany Platt, become a police officer and battle obsessive compulsive disorder.

Outside of Corrie, Colson has made appearances in the Platform 2C series, short film Reverie and on a celebrity special of quiz show Sitting On A Fortune. The 23-year-old has also documented his battles with weight as part of his own film Bored Of Being The Fat Kid which was released on YouTube, and back in January Colson celebrated a personal achievement as he told fans he had been a runner for two years.

Lucrezia Millarini

Lucrezia Millarini (ITV)

Lucrezia Millarini is a journalist and presenter for ITV. She is one of the regular newsreaders for the channel's lunchtime and evening news programmes. In April 2021, she broke the news of the death of Prince Philip in a special announcement.

The 46-year-old participated in ITV's Dancing On Ice in 2020 with dance partner Brendyn Hatfield. They were the second pair to be eliminated from the competition. Lucrezia had more success later on in 2020, when she won an episode of Celebrity Mastermind.

Wes Nelson

Wes Nelson (ITV)

Wes Nelson was a contestant on the fourth series of Love Island in 2018, where he coupled up with Megan Barton-Hanson. The pair reached the final and took fourth place. He has since competed on Dancing on Ice, finishing as the runner-up alongside dance partner Vanessa Bauer.

The 24-year-old has also appeared on The X Factor: Celebrity and Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins. Wes signed a record deal with EMI Records in 2020, releasing debut single See Nobody that same year. He featured on the Clean Bandit and Topic track Drive in August and released latest number Nice to Meet Ya in April last year.

Rebecca Sarker

Rebecca Sarker (ITV)

Rebecca Sarker plays Manpreet Jutla in ITV's Emmerdale, a doctor and the sister of serial killed Meena Jutla. The actress has also appeared in Coronation Street, Doctors, Holby City, The Golden Hour and EastEnders.

The 47-year-old, from Halifax, Yorkshire, tends to keep her home life private but is a proud mum to two sons aged 15 and 10.

Ryan Thomas

Ryan Thomas is best known for playing Jason Grimshaw on ITV's Coronation Street until 2016. Two years after leaving the soap, he appeared in Neighbours as Rafael Humphreys. The 37-year-old, who was born and bred in Manchester, is the brother of actor Adam Thomas and Love Islander Scott Thomas.

The actor dated his Coronation Street co-star Tina O'Brien for six years and they have a daughter together. He is now engaged to TOWIE star Lucy Mecklenburgh and the pair have been dating since 2017. They met while taking part in Celebrity Island with Bear Grylls and have a son, Roman, and are currently expecting their second child, a baby girl, together.

The Games broadcasts live on ITV at 9pm from Monday 9 to Friday 13 May.

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