Page last updated at 14:19 GMT, Saturday, 20 June 2009 15:19 UK

Cowell admits mistakes over Boyle

Simon Cowell and Susan Boyle
Boyle became a global hit thanks to video-sharing websites

Mistakes were made in the handling of Britain's Got Talent runner-up Susan Boyle, the show's chief judge and creator Simon Cowell has admitted.

Writing in the Daily Mail, Cowell said that it had become "clear to me that we didn't handle the situation with Susan as well as we could have".

The singer, 48, from West Lothian, was taken ill in London suffering from exhaustion after the TV show.

She has since missed a number of shows on the Britain's Got Talent live tour.

Organisers said Boyle would be taking a "rest day" on Saturday, missing a matinee and an evening performance in Nottingham, but was expected to perform shows at Wembley Arena on Monday.

I certainly didn't think, 'here comes a phenomenon who is going to become the most famous woman in the world, I wonder if she can mentally cope with it?'
Simon Cowell

Cowell, 49, said he was not in showbusiness to upset "a nice lady" like Boyle, who shot to international fame after performing I Dreamed A Dream on the ITV1 show.

"Looking back on it all, it has become clear to me that we didn't handle the situation with Susan as well as we could have," he said.

"Yet, to be honest, I don't know that I could have done it any differently."

He said that, after she sang in her first audition, he "thought she had come over well, but not sensationally".

He added: "I certainly didn't think, 'here comes a phenomenon who is going to become the most famous woman in the world, I wonder if she can mentally cope with it?'

Britain's Got Talent winner Diversity
Dance group Diversity beat Boyle in Britain's Got Talent

"I thought she looked a bit eccentric and certainly a character, but that was all.

"Then, several weeks later, after Susan had become a global sensation, we were on a satellite link to the Oprah show together."

He said that in the run-up to the semi-final and final, he "started getting calls from the production team".

"It had become clear that Susan was finding the experience difficult to cope with."

But Boyle gave him assurances she was still happy to carry on.

Talent tour

Cowell said he had realised how distressed Boyle was immediately after dance group Diversity were declared winners of the live final of Britain's Got Talent.

Boyle later said she was well enough to join the UK tour but has so far pulled out of dates in Manchester, Liverpool, Cardiff and Nottingham.

Cowell said he had spoken to Boyle's family last week and asked them, "did we do right or did we do wrong" in letting her carry on with Britain's Got Talent "once it became clear that she was finding it stressful".

"And they said, unanimously, that we did the right thing," he added.



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