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Feature: 'X Factor' Final 24 - The Boys

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Feature: 'X Factor' Final 24 - The Boys
Thanks to Leona Lewis and Alexandra Burke, the Girls have dominated The X Factor in recent years. Diva warblers appear to be favoured by voters over cutesy pop boys. There was Leon in the middle, but the less said about his Right Now album is probably for the better. Can Cheryl Cole find the first hugely successful male winner and triumph for the second year? Read our profiles below to find out the details on the six chaps the Girls Aloud star has to choose from.



Lloyd Daniels
The story so far: The floppy-haired, blue-eyed Welsh teenager won over the judges in Cardiff, despite making some bum notes during a rendition of Jason Mraz's 'I'm Yours'. Luckily, Cheryl Cole saved the day, suggesting that he sing another tune. Lloyd responded with an impressive rendition of R Kelly's 'If I Could Turn Back the Hands of Time', while his sweet performance of 'You Are Not Alone' at boot camp bagged him a spot in the Final 24.
Chances of winning: His voice sounds fragile and he may struggle in the more unusually-themed weeks (any upbeat numbers could prove his downfall), but as long as he keeps that hair-flopping and doesn't end up having his face disfigured before the live shows, he could be this year's Eoghan Quigg and stroll to the final with a teenage girl voting block.



Ethan Boroian
The story so far: He arrived at the London auditions humble and prepared to head back to busking on the Victoria line. But after just two minutes of Kings of Leon's 'Use Somebody', he had Dannii Minogue declaring him "a superstar". His voice won't win any technical prizes, but he has a natural stage charisma, which doesn't come across as forced or cheesy. Since his first auditions, he's done a so-so version of 'Last Request' at boot camp and has spent a large amount of time tweeting his many followers.
Chances of winning: If Cheryl's going to find a winner, Ethan looks like her best bet. His American accent, T-shirt-hugging physique and chiselled jaw have won him plenty of fans from a certain section of DS, while the competition from the other Boys looks relatively weak this year.



Rikki Loney
The story so far: He just missed out on the Final 24 last year and despite complaining about the injustice to the tabloids, Simon Cowell and co have given him a second run in 2009. Cheryl Cole has been a big fan from the start and regardless of a sore throat at boot camp, the judges saw enough of his version of 'These Arms Of Mine' at the first audition to put him through to the penultimate round of the competition.
Chances of winning: His tearful auditions and desperation to win have a whiff of the Austin Drage's about them, but with Cheryl backing him he should expect a decent run in the Final 12. He doesn't look like a winner, though.



Daniel Fox
The story so far: We've not seen much of Daniel, but if the world has been waiting for another Rhydian Roberts, then here is its answer. Raised in Heyworth and an alumni of the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts, he sings pop songs in an operatic style, which usually goes down well with Simon Cowell (G4, Il Divo, etc). His tearful version of 'With Or Without You' wowed everyone apart from a certain young lady from Newcastle. "I don't get it, I don't get... he doesn't have the X Factor," said Cheryl Cole after his boot camp performance.
Chances of winning: Will Cheryl switch her opinion and put Daniel through to the Final 12. We suspect not, but stranger things have happened. Although technically one of the most impressive in the competition, opera-style singers usually fall short because of the unusual song choices they are forced to take on.



Joseph McElderry
The story so far: "The girls are going to love him," according to Louis Walsh. Cheryl Cole thinks he'll make the North-East proud and Dannii Minogue is in love with his dimples. Joseph gave impressive renditions of 'Dance With My Father' and 'Praying For Time' in the first two rounds without a hint of nerves, and there's no massive sob-story so far, either. He apparently learnt everything he knows from performing karaoke.
Chances of winning: He claims to have no singing experience, but with fellow Geordie Cheryl backing him that shouldn't prove a problem. His youth may count against him in the Final 12 as his personality isn't the strongest.



Duane Lamonte
The story so far: Best pals with Leona Lewis, Duane "knows how The X Factor can change people's lives". That's the Dermot O'Leary intro out of the way! Duane performed 'Ain't No Mountain High Enough' and Beyoncé's 'Broken-Hearted Girl' at the auditions, the second of which proved to Simon Cowell that he could do contemporary pop as well as classic soul. He didn't quite make the cut last year, but like so many of the Class of 2009, he's come back for a second shot at glory.
Chances of winning: If Cheryl picks him - and that's a big if - then he could be the surprise package of the competition. He's had little press attention and he has a vocal style which could work well with X Factor arrangements. We reckon it will be the Girls Aloud star's biggest error if she doesn't pick him.

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