X Factor 2013: Sam Bailey crowned winner after showdown with Nicholas McDonald

The former prison guard will release her Christmas single 'Skyscraper'

Sam Bailey is set to wave goodbye to her job as a prison guard in Leicester after being named the winner of the tenth series of The X Factor tonight.

The 36-year old beat Nicholas McDonald to be crowned champion after receiving the most public votes in the closing showdown.

"I don't know what to say apart from that I love that boy Nicholas McDonald," Sam said.

"Sam's a hard one to beat, but I just want to say thank you to absolutely every single person who has voted for me week in week out, I love you all," Nicholas responded.

Decked out in a tartan suit, Nicholas took the stage to perform what would have been his winner's single Five For Fighting's "Superman" before Sam Bailey sung her better-known, soon-to-be hit "Skyscraper" by Demi Lovato.

What happened in the final show?

To open the show, his year's finalists past and present reunited on the Wembley Arena stage for a Glee-style rendition of Katy Perry's "Roar", before former X Factor contestants One Direction returned to the show yet again to perform the title track from their UK and US chart-topping album, Midnight Memories.

The '1D' boys are, alongside Leona Lewis, JLS and Little Mix, huge success stories of the show, which is now in its tenth series. Interestingly, the pop group were placed third in 2010 after Matt Cardle beat them to win - could Luke Friend who left last night follow suit?

The first to lay down his vocal chords this evening was 17-year-old Nicholas McDonald, who chose to perform "Angel" by Sarah McLachlan after receiving glowing comments from the judges for his version earlier in the series.

"You have the voice of an angel with butter wings, it's so effortless and weightless", gushed judge Nicole Scherzinger, with mentor Louis Walsh - wearing tartan trousers in support of his Scottish act- claiming to have seen "the boy grow into a man".

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Nicholas came runner-up to Sam Bailey in tonight's final

Then, it was Sam Bailey's turn to challenge the teenager with a reprisal of her first week track, Jennifer Rush's "The Power of Love".

"You are so inspiring and empowering for other women out there," said Nicole, while Gary Barlow encouraged viewers to pick up a phone and vote.

"Look where you've come in ten weeks my darling," said Sharon. "I love and respect you, my friend forever."

US pop star Katy Perry performed her new single "Unconditionally" while dressed as some kind of golden mythical bird while on Twitter, The X Factor's debut winner Steve Brookstein was posting hate messages about the show.

Just before the result was revealed, legendary singer-songwriter Elton John joined Gary Barlow for his final ever performance as an X Factor judge to sing "Face To Face".

 

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