As expected, Simon Cowell was absent from Saturday (28 October) night’s ‘X Factor’, after being rushed to hospital following a fall on Friday.
While the music mogul returned home the same day, he remained at his London pad while Nicole Scherzinger, Sharon Osbourne and Louis Walsh took their seats on the panel for the first live show.
Addressing Simon’s absence, host Dermot O’Leary said: “He’s doing fine, he’s watching the show at home.
“Get well soon boss and we hope to see you fighting fit very soon.”
Discussion over whether Simon would be on the programme began shortly after news of his fall was revealed and many fans speculated that Cheryl Tweedy could return to the panel to temporarily replace him.
And while the former Girls Aloud star did go to the studio, she remained firmly in her seat in the audience, cheering on boyfriend Liam Payne who was a guest performer.
This year, there are fewer live shows set to air and a shake-up from bosses also means that at least one act will depart on both Saturday and Sunday nights.
The inaugural 2017 live show saw Louis’s Boys and Sharon’s girls perform, with Spencer Sutherland eventually losing out in the public vote and leaving the competition.
‘X Factor’ continues tonight (Sunday 29 October) as Nicole’s Overs and Simon’s Groups take to the stage.