Over 20million viewers watched the former painter and decorator triumph over thousands of rivals to become the champion of X Factor 2010.

Matt Cardle becomes the seventh X Factor champion

The 27-year old from Colchester in Essex was initially dumbfounded by his victory last night. On the XtraFactor, directly following the live show, the modest heart-throb gushed, “I didn`t think I’d even get through to boot camp let alone the judges houses … to be the last one standing is incredible.”

Cardle used his impressive falsetto to defeat soulful Liverpudlian, Rebecca Ferguson, in the gripping battle for first place. In the final moments before the result was announced, show creator Simon Cowell, revealed that the competition was too close for him to call, “I have no idea who is going to win this.”

When Ferguson was declared the runner-up, the shy 24 year-old mother of two described her X Factor experience as ‘amazing’. Despite losing to Cardle, she announced plans to pursue this career path further. Attributing her new found confidence to the show, she said, “I’m hopefully going to carry on making music.”

XtraFactor presenter, Konnie Huq, disclosed that Cardle, who had long been the bookies favourite to win, had received the most public votes in all but the first week. As the victor, Cardle has secured a £1m recording contract but it has been suggested that the top-three runners-up may also be in line to receive contracts. Cowell did not deny the rumour when quizzed by a caller during a live phone in on the XtraFactor. Instead he winked, “We will have to wait and see.”

‘Many of Horror’, a slice of emotive rock balladry by Scottish trio, Biffy Clyro, renamed ‘When We Collide’ and recorded by Cardle, was released today.

It is now that the traditional race for the UK Christmas Number 1 Single begins in earnest as the X Factor Winners Single goes head to head with some particularly strong competition. These include commercial contenders such as Ellie Goulding’s cover of Sir Elton John’s ‘Your Song’ (as featured in the John Lewis Christmas Ad) and Coldplay’s ‘Christmas Lights’.

Following on from the success of last years social networking based campaign to keep Cowell off the top of the charts with Rage Against The Machine`s ‘Killing In The Name Of’, a multitude of grassroots campaigns eager to deny Cardle the top spot have come to the fore. The most prominant of these includes ‘Surfin Bird‘ with over 600,000 ‘likes’, ‘Cage Against the Machine‘with over 80,000.

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