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Doctor Who banned from football as bosses fear injury will halt shoot

DOCTOR Who star Matt Smith has revealed that his TV bosses have put the boot in - by banning him from playing football.

The actor (29) said that he was not allowed to join other cast and crew in a kick-around during filming of the hit BBC One show.

"I'd love to play football now. Everyone at work plays on Tuesdays, but they won't let me," he told the Radio Times.

"I guess it's the insurance companies and, realistically, if I turn my ankle over and we can't shoot, then we're screwed, aren't we?"

The actor also revealed that he was suffering physically while filming Bert & Dickie, in which he plays British rower Bert Bushnell in 1948, London's last Games.

Smith spent six weeks being taught the basics of boatmanship by members of the Leander rowing club in Henley-on-Thames for the BBC One drama.

He told the magazine: "I've got blisters on my hand, cuts and bruises everywhere. Calluses.

"Your bum is the worst thing because those old wooden seats are pretty grim. I loved it, although it's taken its toll physically."

He said of playing a sportsman: "There are so many parallels between that world and the world that I inhabit.

"There's practice, for one thing, and that sense of discipline and preparation. But it's also about sacrifice. To be a top sportsman you have to really make a sacrifice about the way you lead your life. And that's sort of true of acting as well.

"If you want to give it a good go, you've got to make some sacrifices and be as dedicated as you can be. Particularly with Doctor Who.

"It's two or three hours of line-learning a night."

hnews@herald.ie