Pussycat Dolls star Nicole Scherzinger said to be front-runner

Nicole Scherzinger is reportedly set to become a judge on the US version of The X Factor – instead of Cheryl Cole.

The Pussycat Dolls star impressed Simon Cowell when she stood in for the Girls Aloud singer while she was off ill with malaria during the boot camp stage in London last month. 

Nicole blew Simon away,’ explains a source.

‘Her appearance was always being viewed as an “audition” for X Factor US, but no one expected her to be quite as good as she was.’

Cheryl, 27, had been tipped for a role on the new show. 

It’s thought Simon, 50, has opted for Nicole because she is more well-known in the States.

But a spokeswoman insists nothing has been agreed yet.

‘Absolutely no decisions have been made about US X Factor yet,’ she tells the Sunday Mirror.

‘This is pure speculation at this stage.’

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