The X Factor Live Final 2018 – as it happened

Get all the best insights and reactions for Sunday's battle between Dalton Harris, Scarlett Lee and Anthony Russell

The X Factor judges 2018

28 episodes, six weeks of live shows and 16 finalists: it all came down to this, The X Factor Live Final 2018.


In Sunday’s show we saw Dalton Harris, Scarlett Lee and Anthony Russell battle it out to become the series winner. And not only that: the remaining contestants were joined by some very special guests, including Leona Lewis and Kaiser Chiefs.

So, who was crowned champ? And how did each performance go down? Read on for reaction, insight and analysis…

9pm This live blog has now concluded


And the winner is… Dalton Harris!!

2nd place: Scarlett Lee

3rd place: Anthony Russell

Well, come on, at least look surprised!

Okay, a very predictable winner he might have been, but let’s face it, Dalton was a very worthy one. Never ending up in the sing-off, each of his live show performances were pitch perfect – often showcasing a better vocal range than the show’s guest stars.

And sure, he might not have had the biggest personality in the contest, but the quiet modesty Dalton gifted viewers each week came across as genuine – he’s a man able to pull off some downright incredible vocals without showboating.

8.50pm THIS IS IT!

8.47pm Although Dalton is favourite to triumph tonight, The X Factor wouldn’t actually be his first TV talent contest win. In 2010, he was crowned champion of a televised singing show called Digicel Rising Stars, airing on Television Jamaica.

Not quite on the same scale as The X Factor, the show looked at local talent in the hopes of unearthing Jamaica’s finest singers.

Rising Stars has launched some of Jamaica’s best-loved talents, including one Chris Martin (though not of Coldplay fame, unfortunately).

After Rising Stars Dalton released three albums and this single…

8.45pm And the verdict on the Take That performance? Viewers are feeling VERY nostalgic right now…

Although looks like Mark Owen’s moustache was the key talking point…

8.36pm Aaaaand it’s (finally) time for the Take That reunion.

However, maths fans out there will only be able to count three members of the group – four including Robbie Williams. The missing singer of the five-piece group? Jason Orange.

Jason left the boy/man band in 2014, saying that although they’d been no fallings out, he was looking for a life outside music.

8.31pm Like, does Dalton’s winner single really have to be a duet? Isn’t he carrying James Arthur here?


8.30pm ATTENTION DALTON FANS: Today the Jamaican singer topped’s poll of over 13,000 viewers, with 62.34% of fans backing Dalton to win tonight’s show. Scarlett and Anthony split the remaining vote, on 20.62% and 17.04% respectively.


8.24pm We’ll just leave this here…

8.21pm Just wanted to remind you about this drinking game rule after Nile Rodgers’ post-performance interview…

Take a drink when…

  • Dermot asks a guest performer which act they think is going to win and they lie and not say Dalton

8.15pm And now it’s Nile Rodgers and Chic and Misunderstood and Acacia and Aaliyah. Not that you’d know, mind – only the background singers can be heard with this sound mix.

Don’t be surprised if this performance doesn’t make its way onto Youtube…

8.06pm Next up: Scarlett. She’s singing One More Sleep with 2006 X Factor winner Leona Lewis. In a weird twist, Leona duetted with Take That (who are due to perform tonight) in the series three final.

8.04pm In other news, we’re TOTALLY behind this:

“Your secret mission starts HERE!”

8pm Now, we’re not here to say that the next few performances (and many many ad breaks) probably won’t be worth watching, but we will say that Dynasties has just started on BBC1.


(Don’t worry, we’ll let you know if anything happens on ITV. You just go and watch the cute puppies)

7.56pm Interestingly, viewers never actually saw the greatest Robbie Williams moment this series: during the audition stage, the judge came face-to-face with Blobbie Williams. In fact, the plus-size impersonator (Real name Tony James) got four yeses for his Rock DJ cover.

“Blobbie Williams looked eerily like my husband, I’m not going to lie,” Ayda Field previously told “It was like looking into the future; if he has a year of pies then this is now my husband, Blobbie.”

According to his site, Blobbie even turned up to film the Six Chair Challenge, but was told last minute he’d been cut from the competition.


Robbie remind you of a certain somebody here?

7.45pm Your first oh-so-fun X Factor fact of the evening: did you know Anthony Russell first appeared on the show back in 2007?

Well, The Xtra Factor, anyway. The Scouse singer was introduced as “direct from the street, straight-talking Anthony, innit!” by then-host Fearne Cotton. Yup, really.

7.43pm First performance: Anthony Russell singing I Predict a Riot with Kaiser Chiefs. If you listen closely you can actually hear Anthony’s vocals above the music.

And looks like that performance didn’t go down great on Twitter. See if you can spot the running joke…

7.37pm Helpful reminder: there’s still time to vote for your winner.

You can vote for Dalton, Anthony or Scarlett via The X Factor’s free app ­–­ get the iOS version here and the Android one here.

Not able to download the app? Bit weird considering you’re able to read this online article and probably watching the show at the same time, but okay then: use the voting numbers below…

Dalton Harris:

From a mobile: 650 51 02

From a landline: 09020 5051 02

Anthony Russell:

From a mobile: 650 51 01

From a landline: 09020 5051 01

Scarlett Lee:

From a mobile: 650 51 03

From a landline: 09020 5051 03

You can find out more voting information here.

7.34pm In case you were wondering who that mini-Cowell was, here’s everything you need to know about Eric.

Eric, born in February 2014, is the son of Simon and his partner and socialite Lauren Silverman. Simon has been in a relationship with Silverman since 2013.

And, yes, Simon did shamelessly plug his son’s Baby Shark song. “This is Eric’s first release on SyKids Records,” he said. “The record is out now. He is now my boss!”


7.25pm Now, obviously the best way to enjoy The X Factor is to soberly watch its every minute, carefully considering the subtleties of each performance with a notebook and pencil to hand.

But on the odd chance you think a large tipple could help proceedings, here’s the drinking game I’ll be playing tonight.

Drink every time…

  • Louis shouts “yes lad!” with one hand raised in the air
  • Anthony Russell points at the camera while singing
  • Louis announces he’s “so proud” of Anthony or Dalton
  • Ayda mentions Robbie is her husband and it’s cringe. Oh so cringe.
  • Simon uses the phrase “Do you know what?” during a critique
  • There’s some kind of technical hitch
  • Dermot asks a guest performer which act they think is going to win and they lie and not say Dalton

I’m going to need a bigger keg…

7pm The exit poll is in! And it’s very good news for all Dalton fans reading.

Today the Jamaican singer topped’s poll of over 13,000 viewers, with 62.34% of fans backing Dalton to win tonight’s show. Scarlett and Anthony split the remaining vote, on 20.62% and 17.04% respectively.

As Louis Tomlinson might say, YES LAD!

6.55pm So, what happened on last night’s show?

First thing you should know: nobody went home. In a change from tradition, all three finalists made it through to the final night. We’ll leave it up to you whether that’s a good thing or not.

You can see a full review of the performances and judges’ comments here. Spoiler: Dalton was AMAZING.

6.30pm Good evening! Welcome to the X Factor Live Final blog, your guide to the biggest TV event of the night (presuming you’re not watching Strictly, I’m A Celeb or what’s billed to be a puppy-packed episode of David Attenborough’s Dynasties – it’ll be on BBC1 at 8pm – jus’ sayin’).

And what a night you’re in for. If performances from James Arthur and Robbie Williams weren’t enough excitement for you last night then…well, um, it’s going to be more or less the same this evening – both singers are set to return to The X Factor stage tonight.

However, they’ll be joined by a few new guest stars. You can see more information about tonight’s performances here or check out a handy setlist for tonight below…

X Factor Final 2018 Sunday soundtrack

Guest stars

  • Ellie Goulding
  • Nile Rodgers (who was guest judge while Robbie was away on tour) & CHIC
  • Take That with Robbie Williams

You can also expect the finalists to sing their potential winner’s duet single…

Dalton Harris will sing The Power of Love with James Arthur

Scarlett Lee will sing One More Sleep with Leona Lewis


Anthony Russell will sing I Predict a Riot with Kaiser Chiefs and Ricky Wilson, everybody’s favourite coach from The Voice UK (if you rule out Jessie J, Sir Tom Jones, Danny O’Donoghue, Kylie Minogue, Rita Ora, Boy George, Gavin Rossdale, Jennifer Hudson, Olly Murs and Paloma Faith)

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