Hot favourite Sam Bailey closing in on X Factor final glory

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Sam Bailey appears to be edging ever closer to being named as the winner of this year’s X Factor, with the 36-year-old priced at 4/11 to claim victory on the reality television show.

The former prison officer is now the shortest priced favourite ever at this stage of the competition with Ladbrokes, following another impressive weekend for the female vocalist, who has garnered favourable comparisons with former Britain’s Got Talent star Susan Boyle.

Bailey has already undergone a notable transformation since her initial audition on the ITV show, dropping three dress sizes and receiving a popstar makeover since making her live television debut.

And her fairytale ending could be complete with success on the X Factor, where she remains way out in front in the betting, with Nicholas McDonald her nearest challenger.

The young Scot can be backed at 5/1 to provide a Diversity-style shock in the final while sing-off survivor Luke Friend is next in the betting at 7/1 having vanquished one of the early favourites for the competition, Tamera Foster, over the weekend.

Oddly enough, despite being the first act through to the semi-final, boy group Rough Copy are rank outsiders to win the show at 16/1.

More alarming still for the Gary Barlow-backed outfit is their position as current favourites to exit next, at odds of 5/6, with Friend on at 7/4 following his rousing performance on Sunday.

Rough Copy also remain at 4/11 to be in the bottom two, meaning we could be set for another walk-out-strop from the Take That maestro come the weekend.

In the meantime, however, all eyes remain on Bailey, who looks set to follow in the footsteps of Alexandra Burke and Leona Lewis with victory.

Let’s just hope she avoids going the same way as Steve Brookstein.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Jack Beresford

Jack Beresford is a content writer with over five years of experience in writing about sport and betting, including a two-year spell with Axonn Media. Contributes articles to HereIsTheCity and Lad Bible, while previous credits include Bwin, FTB Pro, Bleacher Report and the QBE rugby. Avid follower of tennis, rugby union, motorsport and football, Jack also writes about poker for Cardspiel.com alongside Guardian journalist Dominic Wells.