It's a matter of days until Strictly Come Dancing is back on our screens once again. Get ready to rumble – or simply put your feet up this Friday night (23 September) instead of indulging in those after work drinks – because BBC1's ballroom series is returning.

And to get us revved up ahead of the show's launch night, there's some new and exciting news regarding the forthcoming Strictly 2017 tour as Countryfile presenter Anita Rani has been announced as its new presenter.

The 38-year-old radio and television personality – who starred as a contestant on the series last year – will take over from Great British Bake Off host Mel Giedroyc. The latter has instead signed up to co-present a new BBC1 talent show in 2017.

Mel will join Graham Norton in presenting new series Let It Shine – a nationwide search for singers and actors to play Take That in a new musical.

Rani has presented This Morning, Watchdog and Four Rooms as well as competing in Strictly last year – finishing in fifth place.

Strictly 2016
Anastacia with her dance partner Brendan Cole Jay Brooks/ BBC/ PA
Strictly 2016
Danny Mac with his dance partner Oti Mabuse Jay Brooks/ BBC/ PA

In terms of who the bookies have put their money on to win the new series, Will Young is emerging as an early favourite out of the 15 contestants – who have begun rehearsing for the first episode this week.

While William Hill reckon that former Labour politician Ed Balls is the most likely to go out in the first week with a 100/1 odds of winning as well as oldest contestant, Birds of a Feather actress Lesley Joseph, Young is predicted with a 7/2 odds of being the new Strictly king.

Former Eternal star Louise Redknapp has been given a 7/1 odds of winning while glamour girl Daisy Lowe has a 25/1 chance in the bookies' opinion thus far.

Strictly 2016
Laura Whitmore with her dance partner Giovanni Pernice Jay Brooks/ BBC/ PA
Strictly 2016
Melvin Odoom with his dance partner Janette Manrara Jay Brooks/ BBC/ PA

The 14<sup>th series of the long-running show will be presented by Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman. They will front the first of this weekend's two live shows which sees six of the 15 couples join forces with their professional counterparts to battle it out on the dancefloor in front of judges Len Goodman, Craig Revel Horwood, Bruno Tonioli and Darcey Bussell.

This year's celebrity contestants are Anastacia, Claudia Fragapane, Daisy Lowe, Danny Mac, Ed Balls, Greg Rutherford, Laura Whitmore, Lesley Joseph, Louise Redknapp, Melvin Odoom, Naga Munchetty, Ore Oduba, Robert Rinder, Tameka Empson and Will Young.

Strictly 2016
Louise Redknapp with her dance partner Kevin Clifton Jay Brooks/ BBC/ PA
Strictly 2016
Naga Munchetty with her dance partner Pasha Kovalev Jay Brooks/ BBC/ PA

The line-up offers great variety as we've got stars from all walks of life including news readers, judges, politicians, singers and models. Half of them will take to the floor on Friday night's show and nobody will be sent home... as of yet.

Watch Strictly Come Dancing on Friday at 9pm and again on Saturday at 6.30pm on BBC1.

Strictly 2016
Tameka Empson with her dance partner Gorka Marquez Jay Brooks/ BBC/ PA
Strictly 2016
Ore Oduba with his dance partner Joanne Clifton Jay Brooks/ BBC/ PA