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Friday, 21 December, 2001, 11:47 GMT
Last minute decision for Pop Idol Rik
Rick and Darius
Rick's place will be taken by Darius if he pulls out
Pop Idol hopeful Rik Waller will make a last minute decision on whether he is well enough to appear in Saturday's final.

The heavyweight singer has been plagued by throat problems, caused by a bug, leading up to the live finals and was allowed to sit out the first show.

But he is being given until the day of the show to make a decision on whether to perform that evening or drop out of the competition.

Waiting in the wings is Darius Danesh, who has been practising along with the other finalists in case he is called in as a replacement.
Gareth Gates is favourite to win the show
Gareth Gates is favourite to win the show

Danesh is the first substitute after coming third in the same heat at Waller.

He rose to notoriety on the Pop Idol predecessor Popstars for his rendition of Britney Spears' Hit Me Baby One More Time.

Waller has been seeing top voice specialist in an attempt to get make a strong enough recovery to sing live.

It is thought he will only take part if his voice is 100% up to it.

'Lap of the gods'

Waller's father Kris is hopeful his son can take part but said: "It really is up in the air and in the lap of the gods."
Pop Idol winner odds
6-4 Gareth Gates
2-1 Rosie Ribbons
7-2 William Young
7-1 Aaron Bayley
8-1 Rik Waller
Source: Eurobet

Although Waller was a popular entrant with voters, the judges have not been so impressed.

Simon Cowell told him that all the attention he had been receiving in the press had made him conceited.

Pop Idol continues the success of Popstars, the show that put hit group Hear'Say together.

Ten thousand wannabe stars took part in auditions for the ITV1 show, and the winner will be given a record deal.

See also:

19 Dec 01 | TV and Radio
Idol's Rik waits on voice
16 Dec 01 | TV and Radio
Korben ejected from Pop Idol
17 Nov 01 | TV and Radio
Under-age Pop Idol hopeful rumbled
16 Oct 01 | TV and Radio
Take That manager attacks Pop Idol
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