Ella Henderson has been eliminated from 'X Factor' in what was a "great tragedy" and "one of the biggest shocks we've ever had on the results show".
The 16-year-old last girl standing, who was hailed a "golden goddess", was in the bottom two with the show's other favourite James Arthur.
With two votes each after the sing-off, the decision was taken to deadlock and moments later Ella's fate was sealed as she received the fewer public votes.
Visibly emotional, Ella's mentor Tulisa Contostavlos described the young star's exit from the show as "absolutely ridiculous", but all judges were in a state of shock when the bottom two performers were revealed.
With the show's controversial contestant Rylan Clark safely through, with Union J and Jahmene Douglas, the crowd booed loudly when Christopher Maloney was also confirmed for next week - leaving Ella and James to battle it out for the remaining place.
With the audience's booing continuing, host Dermot O'Leary said: "Well, you can tell already from the studio it's a shock."
And he added: "One of the biggest shocks we've ever had on the results show."
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Commenting on the two acts who found themselves in the bottom two, Nicole Scherzinger said: "Whatever happens tonight it will be a great tragedy for the show."
Louis Walsh said: "I'm in shock. I thought these were two finalists."
Meanwhile, Gary Barlow, who has often encouraged viewers to vote for the best singers on the show, said: "I always knew it was going to come to this. There isn't anything between these two acts."
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