Victoria Coren Mitchell - Writer, Broadcaster & Poker Player


X Factor Leak?

Saturday, 1 November 2008

Well I’m back from Budapest - no joy in the tournament, but I got the chance to see a lot of this beautiful city, and also became, briefly, a Hungarian celebrity when our PokerStars press conference was broadcast on the main news. For two days, I was the new Zsa Zsa Gabor. Or possibly Uri Geller. A cashier in the Tropicana casino (which isn’t even the casino where the EPT was happening) asked for my autograph! I was very excited. Until I remembered that this means “the breasts question” has now been broadcast halfway across Eastern Europe…

Anyway, I was home just in time for the X Factor - I’m watching it now, and I have to admit I’m nervous. Louis has just told my boy Austin that “You have a problem connecting with the public”. Where does this come from? Has Austin had a low phone vote that Louis knows about? After all, this is a good-looking kid with a fantastic voice. A “problem connecting with the public” is exactly what Louis WOULD say if he was aware of an unexpectedly low vote.

I was worried about a leak a few weeks ago, when Diana suddenly went favourite and has stayed that way ever since. Don’t get me wrong - I think Diana would make a great little pop star, but that’s different from being an X Factor winner. Why such a sudden switch? And how come the punters are so sure of her victory that the market’s barely moved since she went favourite? Do they know something?

  But what can I do? I can only follow my instincts. If I rule out the possibility of a leak, I would have to say that Austin (12/1 and will drift massively after tonight, if he doesn’t actually get evicted) is the value. I’d also have thought that Laura would strike a bigger chord with X Factor voters than Diana. In fact, of those who have half a chance, Diana is my only loser.

  I’ve been right on every series of the X Factor and Pop Idol since they started - except once. Leon was my best result, when the world (last year) was so sure of a Rhydian victory that there was a “winner without Rhydian” market on Betfair. And two years ago, I laid Leona to win and that was a terrible rick.

  This time I have liked Austin from early on, but my note of caution is coming in: something about what Louis said has made me fear a phone vote leak. Nothing much I can do with my position; I’m rich if Austin wins, poor if Diana wins, and banking a reasonable profit on everyone else. But I’m nervous. I’m nervous.

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Comments

Victoria Coren at 11:22 pm on November 1st, 2008

Oh dear. Nerves well placed - not good news for Austin. Now I just have to start hoping that Diana doesn’t win…


Tom Richards at 2:46 pm on November 2nd, 2008

Im sorry Vicky but I have to disagree with your blog in this case, not that I know who any of these people are but I just begrudge the Xfactor completely. (No I wasnt turned down in the early rounds haha!) After the first few weeks when the donkey singers are free to roam and give the good old British public a good laugh it bores the hell out of me because its always a young boy, a group of girls and im sorry to say this but a token black guy! That is why I dont watch the xfactor!
Also im gutted that you werent in the England team for PNC! I turned on only to hear you narrating, although it is a welcome change to Jesse James commentating everything i wish you were playing!
Also good luck in upcoming tournements or cash games.


Ray at 8:52 pm on November 3rd, 2008

Hi Vicky, sorry about Austin, sad news. On the bright side i would like to be your celebrity stalker if that is OK with you. To help me with the planning could you send me a copy of your schedule for the next month so i can arrange to come away from Catherine Tate (she is ok but kept inviting me in for cups of tea, which really does not help with the whole stalker/stalkee thing). Also help bus fare would be nice, if you are in the Berkshire area i can always hitch, but sometimes it is difficult to get into the home counties on a thumb and a smile.


Victoria Coren

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