Alexandra Burke's brother has hit out at cruel online trolls who are bullying the star.

Alexandra Burke and Gorka Marquez

Alexandra Burke and Gorka Marquez

The 'Strictly Come Dancing' contestant - whose beloved mother Melissa Bell passed away in August - has been branded "fake" for breaking down in tears during the show and despite receiving praise from the judges, she has failed to win over the voting public.

Her half-brother Travoir told the Sunday People: "People have forgotten that she's just lost her mum. People have forgotten that she's human as well. It's bullies. They're attacking someone who's trying to please them.

"She is upset, but she is still working so hard and they are tuning in to watch her. It's sad.

"Anything you do, people are going to criticise you. But she's been through a lot in the past few months and they're kicking her when she's down. It's like she can't win.

"She is a diva, you have to be a diva. You have to be to win. You can't please everyone. No matter what you do, you're still going to get criticised.

"She's competitive. People just don't like people who are driven.

"She is being herself with the emotions - you can't help yourself crying sometimes. If she wasn't crying they'd still find something to say. They'd go, 'why's she not crying? She's acting tough'. People have got her wrong."

Alexandra recently admitted that the online abuse has been getting her down.

She said: "The saddest thing is that I started the show completely myself - my joy and my tears were 100 per cent genuine, however much people said they were fake.

"But I'm now so self-conscious, I try not to react at all in case people say, 'Oh, look, here are the fake tears again'."

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