Why is Simon Cowell not judging BGT semi-finals tonight?

SIMON COWELL has been a fan favourite on Britain's Got Talent since its first series back in 2007.

The media mogul and famed talent spotter has rarely missed a single moment as a judge in 14 years on BGT – so why as he not been present for the 2020 semi-finals?

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Why is Simon Cowell not on Britain's Got Talent tonight?

This year, Simon Cowell has missed shows for just the second time in Britain's Got Talent's 14-series history.

The Syco founder did not judge the auditions in series five back in 2011.

The outspoken mogul has missed all five BGT semi-finals and will be absent from the Grand Final later this month after suffering a broken back.

Cowell fell off an electric bike while in Malibu, almost becoming paralysed and needed surgery to correct his back.

The 60-year-old has been told to rest up, meaning he is unable to take part in the BGT live rounds.

Who is Simon Cowell's replacement?

After a thorough search, ITV have replaced Cowell with Ashley Banjo who won the competition back in 2009 with dance group Diversity.

The 31-year-old has taken over Simon's seat for all five semi-finals and the final – while he also performed with Diversity during the first show.

Simon said of Banjo: "Ashley will be a fantastic addition to the panel. He knows the power of the show and the responsibility of it.

"I couldn’t think of a better person to sit in my seat whilst I follow doctor’s orders. I hate that stupid bike."

Fellow judge Amanda Holden, was also appointed Head Judge in Simon's absence.

The 49-year-old actress has also been a judge on the show since the first series.

When is Britain's Got Talent on?

Britain's Got Talent will be back on our screens tonight from 8pm on ITV.

It will be the last of five semi-finals.

All semi-finals have been pre-recorded and with no audience, before the Grand Final in October which will be live.

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