X Factor presenter Olly Murs made a Blackpool singer’s heart skip a beat when he joined him on stage during the show’s auditions at Wembley.
Simon Cowell and co were left in fits of laughter after the ‘Troublemaker’ singer ran on to duet with Paul Robathan, from Bispham, in a clip to be aired on tonight’s Xtra Factor programme.
Fellow northerners Cheryl Fernandez-Versini and Nick Grimshaw were full of praise for the 33-year-old’s fast food-inspired interpretation of Murs’ hit single ‘Wrapped Up’.
But with the judges split over the performance, the former X Factor runner up ran back on to the stage and appealed to Rita Ora to put him through to boot camp.
Supermarket worker Paul told The Gazette: “He joked with me and said ‘do you want me to help you?’
“I said ‘if I get stuck, come on’ – I didn’t think he was going to come on anyway.”
The 33-year-old proudly showed off his seaside roots when he came on stage holding a portion of fish and chips.
He told Cheryl: “This is kind of a souvenir of my home town.”
Paul, who describes himself as a “song recycler”, then won over the crowd with his original lyrics, declaring his love for chips and gravy.
The line prompted Nick and Cheryl to lament the lack of gravy in London’s chip shops – but not before being treated to a duet as Murs came on stage clutching a piece of paper with the lyrics on for the chorus.
The judges were all smiles afterwards and Simon applauded the performance, telling Paul: “You will be remembered for that”.
Rita chimed in with: “You are a lyricist, my friend, but would Simon Cowell sign you to his label?”
There were loud boos from the crowd when the pair both voted not to send him through despite Nick and Cheryl’s “yes” votes.
The stalemate, which would have seen Paul sent home disappointed, prompted a passionate appeal by Murs for the judges to reconsider.
He came back on stage and he was asked why Rita should change her mind, he pointed to the audience and replied: “Because, you know what, 3,500 yeses in here. That’s why.”
Speaking about his experience, Paul said: “I thought the crowd were booing at me but they were booing because Simon his hand up to stop me.
“I like to poke fun at myself a bit –the main part is making people smile.”
The episode of Xtra Factor airs tonight at 9.30pm on ITV2.
Sing along with Paul: Lyrics to the fast food version of ‘Wrapped Up’
For anyone wanting to join in with Paul Robathan’s original version of Olly Murs’ hit ‘Wrapped Up’ on X Factor tonight, the lyrics are:
Now I like a bit of fast food when not in the cookery mood
Don’t pay silly prices to dine out
I like my burgers, pasties or pies but sometimes I might just have fries though for toppings they’re often crying out
Oh how I love chips and gravy but I begrudge paying another 80p
A good chip shop may sprinkle cheese and do a deal with fish and chips with mushy peas
And they might say:
Do you want it wrapped up with salt and vinegar?
Or left open to eat right now?
Here’s a fork, sir. Don’t use your fingers. Do you want a drink to wash it down?