Nicole Scherzinger had to put up with some good-natured teasing from her fellow X Factor judges after Alesha Dixon temporarily replaced her on the panel.
Britain’s Got Talent star Dixon stepped in while former Pussycat Doll Scherzinger had to miss two days of auditions for the upcoming 14th series of the ITV singing contest.
And when Scherzinger returned, she had to cope with some digs about Dixon being perfect on the panel.
Host Dermot O’Leary said: “All the judges did (tease her). Poor Nicole came back to, ‘Oh Alesha was very good!’. They were still talking about her just two days ago!”
Judge Louis Walsh added: “Simon winds everyone up! He was saying to Nicole how Alesha was so amazing and that everyone loved her, that she’s a great singer and all that.
“But Nicole knows she’s the best. She’s a great judge, she’ll tell you herself that she is!”
Cowell admitted: “The great thing about Nicole is you throw out the bait and she takes it every time!”
He said Dixon was a great addition to the panel.
“She was amazing,” he said. “She was going to be on the show in the first place before BGT. She was brilliant; I have to tell you, seamless. I would hire her on my record label, she’s that good.”
However, Scherzinger refused to be rattled by all the compliments heaped on Dixon, saying the pair are good friends.
She said: “There was one of the auditions that Mrs O (Sharon Osbourne) couldn’t make so Alesha stood in for her too.
“Me and Alesha were having so much fun, I don’t think Simon liked that because he couldn’t control us.
“Together we are trouble! Together we are double trouble, we have too much fun together.
“Simon tries to wind me up about everything.”
:: The X Factor returns to ITV on Saturday September 2 and Sunday September 3 at 8pm.
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