In a shock result, 24-year-old support worker Jai McDowall fought his nerves on the Britain’s Got Talent final last night as he sang ‘To Where You Are’ by Josh Groban.
McDowall had started the night knowing he was not a favourite, a although he was visibly shaken throughout his performance, he managed to wow the audience and win £100,000 and a spot on the Royal Variety Performance in front of the Queen.
12-year-old Ronan Parke was tipped to win the final, but many speculate that this past week’s claims in the press that Simon Cowell’s firm, Syco, had already had known him could have been his downfall.
An internet blogger had claimed that Parke already had a management deal and training from Syco to appeal to the audience, a claim which prompted Cowell to contact the police to investigate. Cowell also used Friday night’s semi-final to strongly deny the allegation.
On the night of the final, Simon had suggested there could be a shock result. In the end, he was right.
Commenting on McDowell’s performance, Cowell said: “He wasn’t one of the favourites coming in but tonight we could feel he nailed the song. He came in believing that he could win and I think he’s a worthy winner.”
Parke did remain a favourite of the judges who commended his perfect performance, with Amanda Holden actually admitting to McDowell that she “really, really wanted Ronan to win.”
In the end, it was the public vote that mattered and winner McDowall was taken aback by the result. He could barely speak when he was announced the winner but managed to say that he felt “absolutely amazing”.
Watch Jai’s winning performance here: