Belfast Telegraph

X Factor fix claims are lies, all lies, says Louis Walsh

X Factor judge Louis Walsh last night described reports that last weekend's nail-biting elimination climax was a charade as "lies, all lies".

The hit show was mired in controversy yesterday when show presenter Dermot O'Leary was reported as saying that scenes where judge Cheryl Cole refused to make a decision over which of her two acts should leave the competition had been pre-planned.

Millions of viewers had seen Cole unable to decide whether X Factor singers Treyc Cohen or Katie Waissel should be sent home.

Cohen, a call centre worker from Tamworth, Staffordshire, was subsequently ousted after judges voted against her two to one.

O'Leary was yesterday quoted as saying Cole's seemingly agonising decision had in fact been decided by show bosses during a commercial break.

But Louis, who voted for Treyc to leave the show, branded the reports as "lies".

"It's all lies, all lies. We, the judges never ever know who is going to be in the bottom two. I wouldn't have been freaking out taking that decision if it had been worked out in advance," he said last night.

The former Boyzone manager said his main concern now was the happiness of Irish contestant Mary Byrne, whose below-par performance on last weekend's show almost cost her a place in the competition.

The 51-year-old Tesco worker will be singing the Elton John track 'Can You Feel The Love Tonight?' -- taken from the Lion King' soundtrack on an Elton John-themed X Factor this Saturday.

"I gave Mary six songs to choose from and this is the one she felt suited her best," Walsh added.

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