Thursday 14 December 2017

Mary silent over row after getting boot from 'X Factor'

Mary Byrne arrives at the ITV 'Daybreak' studios in London early yesterday for an appearance on the breakfast TV programme the morning after losing out on a place in the 'X Factor' final
Mary Byrne arrives at the ITV 'Daybreak' studios in London early yesterday for an appearance on the breakfast TV programme the morning after losing out on a place in the 'X Factor' final
Mary Byrne on 'Daybreak'

Ken Sweeney Entertainment Editor

'X Factor' sensation Mary Byrne maintained a dignified silence yesterday over the controversial circumstances of her exit from the show.

The checkout worker from Ballyfermot admitted she had been warned by the show's producers to 'be careful' about what she said -- but she insisted she wasn't bitter with the way things had turned out.

"There's nothing I can do about that, and more importantly it won't change anything," she said.

"Myself and my mentor Louis Walsh wanted to get to the final and it didn't happen for a lot of reasons. They have their reason but I don't think they did anything wrong.

"I think it's just the way it went and that's it now. I'm coming home to a hero's welcome, to the most beautiful people in the world. I'm happy with that."

But despite MaBy's protestations, the row continued over the last-minute decision to allow the judges decide who would go through to the final. In previous years, the public had decided. And show presenter Dermot O'Leary told viewers last week the decision was up to them.

But in the end, the decision belonged to the judging panel -- Simon Cowell, Louis Walsh, Dannii Minogue and Cheryl Cole. They put Cher Lloyd through to next week's final and sent Mary home.

The finalists were only told of the rule change on Sunday morning, Mary revealed. "We all presumed it was down to the public vote but they changed the format because there was five of us in it.

"They normally only have three who would go through to the final, but because there was five, they decided they would do it one more time as regards a public vote," said Mary on RTE Radio's 'Mooney' show yesterday.

But the singer shrugged off any suggestion that the uproar over her exit could prompt ITV bosses to bring her back as the fifth finalist in next weekend's 'X Factor' final.


"I don't think that will happen. I am going back next week to congratulate the winner of the show. I have always said it was a young people's show. Four young acts have gone through and good luck to them," she said.

Last night her sister-in-law Geraldine Byrne had branded the whole 'X Factor' "a build-up to nothing" and called for an inquiry as to the circumstances in which Mary was eliminated from the programme.

"Mary's hands are tied," she told the Irish Independent.

"She was told not to make any comment. But the people of Ireland, their hands are not tied. They should call for an inquiry into what happened. It should have gone to viewers' votes on Sunday night.

"That way our votes would have counted instead of it just being Simon's decision. After all the money people spent voting, what happened was very unfair. I think I speak for a lot of Irish people who won't be bothered looking at 'X Factor' from here on in." The mother-of-one said that following her elimination, judge Simon Cowell, whom she had publicly criticised the previous night, had come on stage and given her a hug.

"Simon said he would look after me. He did say there was a little album planned and I am kind of hoping that is going to take place. I am going to have a little career for myself with the support and love of so many good people to whom I am so grateful," Mary said.

Among those supporters was her sister Betty Donovan who spoke moving on 'Mooney' yesterday of how her sibling's 'X Factor' adventure had lifted her spirits while her husband Liam battled lung cancer. "Mary took our mind off it. She took us out of all that. I'm really proud of her," said Ms Donovan.

Mary will be interviewed by Ryan Tubridy on 'The Late Late Show' this Friday and perform her first Irish homecoming show in The Wright Venue in Swords, north Dublin on December 29.

Irish Independent

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