Simon Cowell apologises to Britain’s Got Talent winner Jai McDowall for claiming he ‘wasn’t a genuine star’

Rachel Luna/Getty Images
Rachel Luna/Getty Images

Simon Cowell has apologised to Britain’s Got Talent winner Jai McDowall after expressing his “disappointment” with the singer-songwriter.

McDowall, 33, won the ITV talent show in 2011, beating bookies’ favourite Ronan Parke.

Cowell, 59, didn’t hold back in his assessment of the star the following year, telling ITV’s Daybreak that McDowall “wasn’t one of our best ones.”

“I was disappointed with Jai,” he admitted. “You want to find someone who is a star all over the world and who has got a long career. With respect to him, he wasn’t one of our best ones.

Disappointed: Cowell made some scathing comments about McDowall (Ken McKay/Talkback Thames/REX/Shutterstock)
Disappointed: Cowell made some scathing comments about McDowall (Ken McKay/Talkback Thames/REX/Shutterstock)

He added: “You want a Diversity or a George Sampson or a Susan Boyle, a different kind of artist who is a genuine star.”

McDowall’s debut album was released on Cowell’s Syco label but only charted at number 54. He later parted ways with the company.

Comeback: Jai McDowall performs on Britain's Got Talent: The Champions (Syco / Thames)
Comeback: Jai McDowall performs on Britain's Got Talent: The Champions (Syco / Thames)

Ahead of McDowall’s appearance on Britain’s Got Talent spin-off The Champions, which sees former contestants go head to head, Cowell has admitted that he should have apologised to the singer “some time ago.”

“I did feel when I saw him again that he’s the definition of a proud man,” Cowell told The Sun. “He didn’t sulk - he just came back to prove a point. And he did.”

“I knew I had to apologise to him at that moment. It gave me a chance to say something publicly I should have said some time ago.

“But it as also the fact that he had the guts to come back and compete knowing I wasn’t that supportive the first time he was on the show.”

http://players.brightcove.net/1348423965/default_default/index.html?videoId=6073610230001

Britain's Got Talent: The Champions trailer

In the second episode of Britain’s Got Talent: The Champions, which will air tomorrow, McDowall receives a standing ovation from Cowell, The Sun reports.

Dance troupe MerseyGirls will also return to the stage, alongside 2018 winner Lost Voice Guy.

Britain’s Got Talent: The Champions continues on ITV at 8.30pm on September 7.

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