Belfast Telegraph

Sam toasts final place with cuppa

There was no champagne celebration for Sam Bailey, who toasted getting through to the X Factor final with a cup of tea.

The 35-year-old prison officer and mother of two performed for Robbie Williams and Sharon Osbourne at her Los Angeles home and was in tears even before Sharon told her she was in the final 12.

Sharon warned her she would "kick your arse" if she did not win and a tearful Sam said: "Oh my God, I need a cup of tea, I can't believe it, I just feel sorry for the rest of them."

She said: " This competition is tougher than working in the prison. When I was at judges' houses I was completely stripped back with no amplification of my voice or anything; the heat was just bearing down on me.

"Having Sharon as my mentor is amazing; she gave me a massive hug and even made me a cup of tea at her house. The whole thing still doesn't feel real to me."

Viewers saw Sam joined in the final by Sharon's "Devon diva" Shelley Smith and Lorna Simpson and three boys - Luke Friend, Nicholas McDonald and Sam Callahan.

Luke, a 17-year-old student from Devon, said his choice of songs for the judges had an "emotional" connection for him, saying: " Two years ago my grandpa died of cancer; when I went in to see him I didn't even talk to him, I just sang that song. We were really close; I would always go round his house and perform songs to him, as he was the only person who would always give me an honest opinion."

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