Creep-ing Into Contention
The dream run continues with Gifty’s bottom 2 appearance and subsequent elimination from X Factor yielding a further two winning bets at advised odds of 5-2 and 8-1.
This follows winning bets on both Strictly and X Factor at odds of 10-1, 7-1, 6-1 and 20-1 over the previous 2 weeks. The settled bets during this autumn run of Strictly and X Factor is currently showing a +60pt profit. If you are treating 1pt as £10 a total investment of £230 will have garnered a return of £830 and a £600 profit which equates to an ROI of 261%.
As someone who, over the course of the tv betting year, would be more than happy to achieve a 40% ROI, this figure is off the chart right now. And looking ahead, the portfolio of unsettled bets is, in general, in quite a healthy state as the Strictly and X Factor markets stand today:
Advised Strictly pre-lives:
Ore Oduba – 2pt e/w (a fifth the odds) – 12-1 – Ladbrokes, Coral
Danny Mac – 2pt e/w (a fifth the odds) – 10-1 – Skybet
Greg Rutherford – 1pt e/w (a fifth the odds) – 25-1 – Ladbrokes
Louise Redknapp – Top Female – 4pt win – 100-30 – Stan James (3-1 with bet365, William Hill)
Advised X Factor pre-lives:
Outright – Matt Terry – 4pt win – 9-4 – Paddy Power, Betfred, Skybet
Ryan Lawrie – 1pt e/w (a quarter the odds) – 16-1 – bet365
Top Girl – Samantha Lavery – 2pt win – 3-1 – William Hill, Ladbrokes
Top Overs – Honey G – 4pt win – 15-8 – William Hill
In-series unsettled bets:
Strictly Outright – Greg – 14-1 – 1pt e/w – Betstars
Greg – 25-1 – 1pt e/w (fifth the odds, first 3 places) – Ladbrokes, SportingBet
Claudia – 2pt win – 6-1 – Ladbrokes
X Factor Outright – 4 Of Diamonds – 9-1 – 1pt e/w – bet365, Coral
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Back to the weekly review of X Factor and there has been surprise expressed in some quarters regarding Gifty’s elimination. The feeling here is, the signposts could not have been clearer she was in the cross hairs this week.
While we had been given many clues she was struggling in the public vote, to then put her in the dreaded coffin slot, singing an obscure song choice in ‘I’m In Love With A Monster’ during the Strictly overlap and then be memory-holed by Matt’s stellar performance that followed…
We also saw in the positive treatment of both Sam and Emily that the signs were there the show had given up on Gifty and was focusing its efforts on the other 2 Girls instead.
This made it a surprise, again, to see odds as big as 4.5 being dangled on Gifty’s elimination during the sing-off. On all known evidence the sing-off was much more of a coin toss and given they had stressed the ‘potential’ tag in regard to Four Of Diamonds, it would have been an odd move to ditch them one week later. Gifty’s exit has also levelled things up across the four categories.
With the ‘Girlband vs Boyband’ theme conveniently landing on Dermot’s ‘random’ wheel, there is clear narrative potential for Four Of Diamonds to shine on Saturday, receive the judges’ plaudits and bounce above the bottom 3 after consecutive sing-off appearances.
That is assuming the bottom 3 continues and Ryan finds himself the potential flashvote buffer once more. He did a reasonable job with ‘Everybody’ but you can understand his disillusion at his handling during the live shows.
Sam put in her best live performance to date singing ’Total Eclipse Of The Heart’ and received positive feedback from the judges, being told there is a gap in the market for her. She also enjoyed a very positive VT that focused on her making her family proud. She would be best served being given more contemporary songs with a rock edge or anything vaguely cooler or more relevant than a Bonnie Tyler hit or Lionel Ritchie/Michael Jackson for that matter.
Saara’s rendition of ‘Bad Romance’ was very cabaret and she did not enjoy as much vote-generating rhetoric from the judges as the previous week. Her vocal does have a tendency to get a bit screechy. She may well have been flirting just above the bottom 3 aided by the goodwill she earned putting her spin on Bjork the previous week.
There was initial talk of Sharon going to Finland with Saara this week. That sounds warning bells if it comes to pass in that it will give ample room to paint her as a quirky foreigner once more, and if you want to get subliminal it could invite send Saara home vibes to the voting audience.
Up to this point the show has been much more invested in Honey G who again got the kitchen sink treatment by way of production and was even name-checked as a potential finalist. It seems less likely they would dump their main watercooler act this year in favour of Saara at this stage.
5am’s ‘Thriller’ effort again highlighted their vocal weakness. Might the show be getting slightly concerned by their lacklustre vocals? It will be very informative this weekend to see how they are treated, especially in relation to Four Of Diamonds given the theme.
Four Of Diamonds would be better suited being given a song that focuses on the harmony rather than, as has been the case up to now, having to negotiate songs with too many solo parts and awkward arrangements which seem to have been set up to expose them individually. If TPTB change tack and decide to lavish them with the kind of support so far offered to 5am, they could still go far.
Which leaves the pimp-slotted Emily who produced a spellbinding rendition of Radiohead’s ‘Creep’ combined with exquisite staging. You could envisage Emily doing an excellent job with other classic tracks like Portishead’s ‘Glory Box’ or The Cure’s ‘Lovesong’. Anything that is plaintive and poignant probably suits her best.
The worry for her is, this goes against the grain in X Factor world and risks being too downbeat and ‘alternative’ for a lot of viewers should it continue over a period of weeks. And being tasked with going the big, uptempo route is unlikely to suit her so well. Her rendition of ‘Anything Can Happen’ at 6CC a couple of years ago was very patchy vocally.
Meanwhile, Matt Terry looks set to continue doing a great job delivering well-known hits and R&B classics which should keep him in the box seat, one, because he is a good-looking solo male and two, because that sort of music territory is much more palatable for the X Factor audience.
Ultimately, the show will decide who it wants to back for the win but the main doubt at this point with Emily is whether they would be keen to ramp her past Matt when every indication so far is that he has their full backing and is halfway towards a Louisa Johnson-style coronation.
Looking into the crystal ball ahead of Saturday night’s show, it is potentially teed up for Four Of Diamonds to escape the sing-off, which suggests you should be looking in the direction of Ryan and Saara as the most likely candidates to be next for the chop. And if the flashvote remains then Ryan looks to have a get-out-of-jail-free card to play.
5-2 Saara to be next eliminated is certainly more appealing than 15-8 Four Of Diamonds but no bet will be advised today. Keep an eye on Comments below as something may emerge once we learn this week’s song choices.
In terms of the overall X Factor betting portfolio, if you have followed the advice so far it makes sense to think about getting Emily covered on the Outright at best available odds. Sam would also make plenty of appeal at 20-1 e/w if it was 3 places. Sadly, the bookies are already only offering first 2 places probably because of Matt’s odd-on status.
X Factor Outright – Emily – 2pt win – 100-30 – Coral, William Hill