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Nic Ladds 23rd Nov 2008 - 15:45

Quiggy and Bungle!

As things look rosey for Simon Cowell and Eoghan Quigg, Louis Walsh manages to all but blow JLS's chances

The X Factor is entering its final few weeks which means, Christmas number ones, teenage girls with nothing to do on a Saturday night and a whole new host of people to open supermarkets and turn on Christmas lights for the next year.

Whatever your view has been of the Simon Cowell benefit that is the X Factor, it has certainly provided some entertainment (Cheryl Cole just appearing every week for a start.) There are also some great value betting opportunities available, with shocks occurring nearly every week.

The first surprise was Austin "Please don't take my dream away" Drage's early elimination when he was one of the market leaders. Then, the talented Laura White was voted out, all the while ultra nice but ultra useless Daniel Evans kept powering through, consistently defying favouritism to be evicted and infuriating punters everywhere.

Now, we have whittled our way down to five wannabe superstars who are all dreaming of being able to suckle at the mega-rich teat of Simon Cowell and seal that £1 million recording contract.

Diana Vickers, with her baffling hand movements is the 13/8 favourite and quite evidently will acquire a record contract whether she wins the show or not. Pudgy Take That front man, Gary Barlow, even offered her a contract if Simon Cowell doesn't want her. However the judges have now lost all power to vote and it is solely down to public opinion. This makes it a lot more open than it would appear at first glance.

It has been well documented that this is not a singing contest; it is more about image and likeability. If it was solely based on singing, 9/4 second favourite Eoghan Quigg would surely have gone by now, while Ruth Lorenzo and JLS should not have been in the bottom two.

The dark horse could well be Alexandra, who at 3/1 is a more appealing proposition than Diana. Alexandra has had no dramas, has never been in the bottom two, is well liked by the judges and is a very good singer. She has been largely in Diana's shadow but she is arguably more talented and has more scope to be liked by the general public as opposed to Diana, about whom it has been said, many times, you either love her or hate her.

The massively punch able, puller of strange faces, Louis "I wish I was like Simon" Walsh has all but blown JLS's chances. Repeated criticism of his song selections and his awful bullying of Danii Minogue on last weeks show will have done him no favours with the public. As a result 15/8 about JLS being the eighth act evicted looks a bet worth taking.

Ruth, who is the even money favourite to be evicted next, is getting better and has proved her ability to come out on top of a battle time and time again. She won't win, as she is simply not as popular as the market leaders, but could survive another week thanks to Louis Walsh's manhandling of JLS.

The suggestion for outright success, at this stage, is Eoghan, who can make it a happy Christmas for Mr Cowell. The loveable Irish youngster will have all the teenage girls voting for him, and, despite not being the best singer has the right image and the right personality to go on and win.

JLS 8th Eviction - 15/8
Eoghan to win - 9/4


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