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Illness forces Sir Tom out of Vegas shows; Star comes down with bronchitis.

Byline: Nathan Bevan

TOM Jones has been forced to cancel shows in Las Vegas after he was struck down with bronchitis.

Still basking in the glow of his recent triumphant Glastonbury appearance, the 69-year-old Voice Of The Valleys had to pull out of both his shows at Casino Rama on Sin City's famous Strip just three songs into the first set on Tuesday evening.

Fans of the Pontypridd performer, including some who had travelled more than a 1,000 miles to see him in concert, were said to be devastated to hear he was too ill to make last night's show too, despite being offered a full refund by the venue.

"Tom told the audience he had a case of bronchitis before leaving the stage," said casino spokesperson Jenna Hunter.

"Unfortunately, after seeking medical advice, it became clear he wouldn't be able to continue with Wednesday's planned concert either."

Journalist Ellen Sterling, who runs, a US-based fansite dedicated to the star, said his followers would be wishing their idol a speedy recovery from his condition.

"Of course, this happened for one show in Las Vegas back in May, but he was back in action the next night," she said.

"However, it's probably a good thing to cancel one or two shows than push and then have to cancel several, isn't it?" Some of the responses posted by contributors weren't entirely in agreement though.

"What I don't understand is, if Tom already knew he had bronchitis and told the audience, why did he perform in the first place. Surely this would make things worse?!" e-mailed one fan called Gill.

Another, Linda P, added: "I feel very badly for Tom having bronchitis and having to end the show early. However, I feel much worse for the loyal fans who came from all over US and Canada to see him perform."

John Osborne, an ear, nose and throat consultant and vice-chairman of the British Medical Association's Welsh Council, said Tom, who was bed-ridden with tuberculosis for a year when he was a boy, most likely caught the infection while travelling back to the States from the UK.

"There can be all sorts of bugs circulating on an aeroplane, so it's very easy to pick something up," he said.

"As you get older it does get harder with your voice, but I'm sure a pro like Tom Jones would know lots of breathing tricks to get round those little problems, especially when you consider the sort of intense performances he gives."


Tom Jones in action. The star has recently come down with bronchitis in Las Vegas
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Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jul 16, 2009
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