Evanna Lynch dominated the ‘Dancing with the Stars’ leaderboard for the first time with this ‘irresistible’ rumba [WATCH]

It’s about time the judges realized what I’ve known since day one on “Dancing with the Stars”: Evanna Lynch is a contender. After middling scores in the early weeks of the competition she finally had a breakthrough on Halloween Night with her first 10s, and on Country Night she did even better, scoring a perfect 30 out of 30 for a tough dance style (rumba) on a challenging theme night. Watch her performance above, and vote in our polls below to let us know if she was really the best of the night.

Lynch is an Irish actress, and her pro partner Keo Motsepe is a South African dancer, so neither of them new much of anything about American country music. That seemed like a major handicap. And the rumba is a slow, sensual dance, which can be a disadvantage for two reasons. First, it doesn’t have big, acrobatic moves or maneuvers to wow the crowd with. Second, that inherent subtlety means even the slightest mistakes will show, so there’s nowhere to hide.

But that wasn’t a problem for Lynch. Bruno Tonioli thought she was “perfectly in-tune with the music and the lyrics.” Carrie Ann Inaba compared her to another late-blooming contestant, season nine finalist Kelly Osbourne, and added, “Watch out, people, this girl is on fire!” And Len Goodman, who has never seen a nit he couldn’t pick, said, “There was nothing in there that I didn’t like.”

Her perfect score for this rumba combined with her near-perfect score for her team dance placed her at the top of the leaderboard for the first time this season. Inaba thinks she’s peaking at just the right time in the competition. Do you agree?

Be sure to make your predictions so that the contestants can see how they’re faring in our racetrack odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before the next episode airs every Monday on ABC. You’ll compete to win a spot on our leaderboard and eternal bragging rights. See our contest rules and sound off with other fans in our reality TV forum. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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