Gary Barlow defends early axing for X Factor hopefuls

Gary Barlow says it was ''heartbreaking'' axing 35 'X Factor' auditionees before they performed at Boot Camp, but insists the decision was necessary because the standards have been so high

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Gary Barlow

Gary Barlow

Gary Barlow insists it was "necessary" to axe 'X Factor' contestants at Boot Camp before they had chance to perform.

The Take That star - who is joined on the judging panel by Louis Walsh, Kelly Rowland and Tulisa Contostavlos - insists it was "heartbreaking" asking 35 hopefuls to leave the contest after being put through to the second stage following their initial audition, but says the standard set was so high, the judges had no choice but to terminate their stint in the competition.

Gary said: "Axing the contestants at boot camp was harsh, but it was also necessary.

"The bar had raised just beyond our expectations and there were some contestants that just didn't cut it. It was heartbreaking."

Gary has already gained a reputation for being tough on the hopefuls but the 'Patience' hitmaker - who has replaced Simon Cowell as head judge - hopes he doesn't come across as "cruel" because he hates watching people get upset.

Speaking at the launch on the show at London's The O2 yesterday (17.08.11), he told BANG Showbiz: "Simon had the biggest shoes ever to fill and I really hope that in doing that I don't come across as cruel.

I hate it when I watch at home and people get upset when the judges are nasty to them."

'The X Factor' returns to ITV1 on Saturday (20.08.11).

Gary Barlow

Solo from Take That's songwriter-singer, promoting his new album, the cheesily titled Since I Saw You Last.

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