Joe McElderry has defended Cheryl Cole’s decision not to put Gamu Nhengu through to the X Factor live shows.
McElderry, who returned to the ITV programme to perform his new single on Sunday night, told The Mirror that his former mentor’s decision had been justified by the performances on the first live show.
“All of Cheryl’s girls gave good performances,” he said. “[They] redeemed her decision to send them through, not Gamu, in the first place.”
He singled out Cole’s wildcard Treyc Cohen for praise, alongside Aiden Grimshaw and Mary Byrne.
“I love Cheryl and we still speak quite a bit,” he said. “I thought Treyc was fantastic on Saturday night and gave a real, diva-esque performance. Totally Tina Turner!”
He added: “Aiden and Mary are two of my other favourites. Mary’s a bit of a dark horse. She could win it.”
McElderry’s new single ‘Ambitions’ is on course for a top five debut in the UK chart this week.