Obviously not - as having seen both Gavin and Ashley Day - there's not much to call between them although they play the part differently - certainly wouldn't consider one the real thing and one not.
Why do producers feel the need to say such ridiculous things in order to justify decisions? I'm sure that she always wanted a long run and therefore a recast - presumably with local actors. Given that the prices are going up and up this means she expects people to pay more for not seeing the real thing!!
An apology to British actors including the majority of the current cast might be in order. How about it Sonia?
I saw Ashley Day on Wednesday and he was fantastic. In my eyes he most certainly deserves to take over the role when Gavin Creel leaves.