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Sick Kelly to miss X Factor show

The X Factor's judging panel will have a different look after it emerged Kelly Rowland is too ill to appear on the show.

Rowland had been due to jet back from the US to coach her acts but is said to have "a viral throat infection" which prevented her from flying.

On Friday night show bosses were looking for a replacement, and there is speculation that US singer Nicole Scherzinger will be drafted in as a guest judge.

In an interview with the Sun, Rowland said: "I'm so sick - I have no idea what is wrong with me, but I have the worst sore throat. I've been in tears all week."

She said had been put on a drip and "can't swallow anything", adding that doctors described her condition as "extremely rare".

A spokeswoman for Rowland insisted that she would return when she was able. She said: "Kelly is devastated she won't be here for this weekend's show. She is extremely ill with a viral throat infection and her doctors aren't permitting her to fly. Kelly will be returning to the show as soon as she has recovered."

The acts mentored by Rowland - Misha Bryan, Sophie Habibis and Janet Devlin - have apparently wished her well. "The girls have been in touch to wish her a speedy recovery and they can't wait for her to get back," the spokeswoman added.

During last weekend's shows, Rowland was involved in a row about Misha's behaviour. Fellow judge Tulisa Contostavlos had accused Misha of being "mean" to other contestants during Saturday's show. Panellist Louis Walsh went further by suggesting she had been a "bully", but on Sunday's episode he was forced to apologise to viewers.

There were reports the former Destiny's Child singer had gone AWOL and fled to Los Angeles, but representatives said she was merely keeping some long-standing commitments in the US and would return on Thursday.

Rowland and Contostavlos are reported to have not spoken since their on-screen bust-up at the weekend.

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