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X Factor 2018: Simon Cowell puts four acts through in major twist | TV & Radio | Showbiz & TV

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However, Simon Cowell made a shock decision and changed the rules of the show.

Shan, Bella Penfold, Molly Scott, Scarlett Lee, Maria Laroco and Georgia Burgess all put their best foot forward for the music mogul and all the musical guests he had invited along.

Although Simon said goodbye to X Factor hopefuls Maria and Georgia, it was a yes for Shan, Molly and Scarlett.

Subsequently, it didn’t look like Bella would be making it through to the ITV live shows.

During their one-to-one chat, Simon began to tell Bella how he had already said yes to three of the girls.

Bella began to say how the decision was “absolutely fine” before Simon turned everything on its head.

"It is fine because I’m putting four people through and you are in the final,” he told a stunned Bella.

“There wasn’t a shadow of a doubt, I believe in you."

Viewers at home were shocked by the sudden turn of events and took to Twitter to comment.

“I love it when simon makes the rules for his own show. #4girls! #xfactor,” one exclaimed.

A second viewer shared: “#XFactor Simon Cowell seems to be making up the rules as he goes along this year but I suppose he is Mr X Factor so he can get away with it lol.”

“So they put four through this year? They keep changing the rules without telling us! #xfactor” a third declared.

Others pondered whether all the categories would now pick all four acts.

“Do they all get four now then or has simon changed the rules just for him #xfactor,” one asked.

Another fan queried: “Simon bends the rules for Bella. So will there be 4 in all categories now. #XFactor She is not the strongest in the girls though.”

There was also another surprise twist on the format tonight as rejected contestant Maria had to perform via live video link.

Maria wasn’t able to fly out to the US due to visa issues and so Simon was forced to deliver the bad news over the phone.

Simon told Maria: "You didn’t make it. I hate telling you this in this manner.

“When you watch the show you’ll understand how difficult this decision has been for me.

"I’m not just saying this but you have to come back."

X Factor continues Saturday at 8.35pm on ITV.

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