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Wild card X Factor contestant Luke White has revealed he’s no stranger to the limelight, after working as a child model in Japan.

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“I was about ten and had long, blond hair,” he told the Post. “It didn’t make me so popular at school but the modelling agencies liked it and I got work in Japan. Did a bit of stuff for Burberry and YSL.”

Fifteen years on and the singer’s golden locks may have gone, but his current do doesn’t appear to be holding him back.

The former Barking and Dagenham College student and his two Times Red band mates Scott Ritchie and Staz Hair are one of four acts battling it out for a wild card spot on the live finals of this year’s X Factor show, screened on ITV.

The act which receives the most votes from the public by noon on Saturday will stay in the competition.

Luke said the Gants Hill based group have been working hard this week to drum up as much support as possible.

“We were on Daybreak and This Morning and yesterday drove around the centre of London on an open top bus. We also did some busking - but got chased off by a warden,” he explained. “It’s been a lot of fun and the public have been great.”

Luke’s professional career as a singer began when he joined a Take That tribute band after leaving college. “It was a wicked job,” he said. “We’d often perform abroad and the women would go crazy. Many would act as if we were really them. I’d get treated like Robbie Williams, which was nice.”

Despite enjoying life in a tribute band, Luke was keen to develop his own material and soon formed a group with Scott and Staz.

He described the trio “like brothers”. “We get on like a house on fire. We fight like brothers too of course. I’ve grown up with Stuart and know him inside out, and Staz has become a great friend since joining the band.”

And the lads get on great with their X-factor rivals, he said, in particular the other groups.

“We’ve had a lot of fun together and there’s actually no real rivalry. The groups are all backing us to get through on Saturday.”

Asked how they’ll feel if the group are sent home on the weekend, Luke said: “Obviously we’ll be disappointed. But we’ll just get back in the saddle and carry on.”

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