X Factor semi-final to be a replica of 12 months ago


We highlighted in an article before last week’s quarter final that if the X Factor was able to direct the vote in a certain direction for the remainder of the series, then Fourth Impact and Lauren Murray would be the next two acts eliminated.

Both found themselves in the quarter-final sing-off, with Lauren given a second life into the last four. She is now the 10/11 favourite of the remaining acts to be the one that doesn’t reach the final.

The reasoning for this producer preference was mentioned previously and so another article going over the same ground is unnecessary.

More intriguing is whether there will be a sing-off in the semi-final, which is something that is becoming a more regular occurrence in recent years.

The first was to ensure that Cher Lloyd got to the final at the expense of Mary Byrne in series seven and the same 12 months ago when Andrea Faustini was saved ahead of Lauren Platt. Luke Friend was also kept in ahead of Rough Copy in between.

It is interesting that in both previous cases, the act that they were keenest to have in the final finished bottom of the public vote. Therefore, a sing-off was the only way they could engineer their desired outcome, assuming that performer could be forced into the bottom two of the vote.

Although this won’t be known until the end of the series when voting figures are released, it is almost guaranteed that Che Chesterman will pick up the fewest votes in the semi-final.

He got a typical bounce in votes in the quarters, having been in the sing-off in the week previous, and typically such a bounce tends to last for just one week.

Meanwhile, Lauren Murray is technically due a bounce of her own this week, which should at least ensure she isn’t bottom.

The other two semi-finalists – show favourite and golden girl Louisa Johnson and entertaining Ghanaians Reggie ‘N’ Bollie – are yet to feature in a sing-off, which suggests they are the most popular of the final four.

Rewinding back to last year, the current situation is very similar.

Andrea was saved in a sing-off in the week before the quarter finals, bounced into the semis and then finished bottom of the vote. He and Che are also comparable being warbling, talented singers that offer little else as a musical package apart from a distinctive voice.

Lauren Platt was saved in the quarter final having not been heavily supported by the show all series and was never really given a moment to shine in the semis to reach the top two in the vote.

Aside from both being called Lauren, Lauren Murray’s songs this week of Runnin’ by Naughty Boy and the club classic Best Of My Love by Emotions won’t offer the chance of much connection either.

The same can’t be said of favourite Louisa, who has It’s A Man’s Man’s Man’s World by James Brown and the version of The Power of Love released by Gabrielle Aplin.

If Lauren is clearly going to finish bottom, the sing-off will probably be scrapped, but, if she is second-bottom, expect the late announcement of a sing-off, from which she will be sent home.

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

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.