The X Factor 2017 contestant Anthony Russell has pulled out of the competition for personal reasons.
Russell, who became a firm favourite among fans – and the judges – after his performance of Issues in the audition stages, made the decision to withdraw himself, a spokesperson for the series told RadioTimes.com.
An official statement explained that Anthony left the show following his successful audition.
“Earlier this month, due to personal reasons, Anthony withdrew from the show. We are sad to see him go and wish his all the best for the future”, it explained.
A source close to The X Factor added, “Anthony has been going through some personal issues for some time – as he sang about at his audition. Those issues were still affecting him. So everyone has urged him to concentrate on getting himself better right now.”
Russell – who first auditioned for The X Factor in 2007 – will still appear on our screens in the weeks to come as he’s already taken part in much of the pre-recorded series, and it’s thought that an invitation to return and give things a go again in a future series has been made.
“Anthony has always said he will never give up on music. Production are all very fond of him and think he has really potential so have told him, if he straightens himself out, they would love him to have another shot at X Factor next year,” a source told RadioTimes.com. “That is the perfect incentive for him to get his life back on track”.
“The public support really did help him to believe in himself. So everyone hopes he will come back next year healthier”, the source said.
X Factor continues on ITV on Saturday and Sunday nights