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BBC Wales' Sue Charles reports
"Two of the best-known voices in pop are aiming for the Christmas Number One"
 real 28k

Thursday, 16 December, 1999, 19:35 GMT
Welsh stars race for Number One

Cerys Matthews and Tom Jones Cerys and Tom are hoping their duet will be Number One


Three of Wales' biggest stars are hoping to become the first Welsh Christmas chart-toppers for 14 years.

Sir Cliff Richard has held pole position for three weeks - but there are several contenders out there with every intention of toppling him.

The main contenders are Tom Jones and Cerys Matthews and their duet of "Baby It's Cold Outside".

They are this year's Welsh hopes along with Charlotte Church and her single "Just Wave Hello".


Charlotte Church Charlotte Church is also a contender
Shakin Stevens had the last Welsh yuletide chart topper with "Merry Christmas Everyone" in 1985.

Caroline Hayhoe, the manager of the HMV music store in Cardiff said both the Tom and Cerys duet and Charlotte Church's single were selling well.

"But I would say the most likely contender is the Artful Dodger who's from Cwmbran," she said.

DJ Phil Jupitus gave Charlotte Church's single the thunbs down dugging it a "car jingle".

"But Tom and Cerys can do no wrong," he admitted.

'Guaranteed success'

But the competition is fierce. Top tips for the top spot are Sir Cliff Richard's current number one "Millennium Prayer", Irish boyband Westlife with the unseasonal "Seasons in the Sun" and the re-release of John Lennon's "Imagine".

"It's the icing on the cake for the music industry," said BBC Radio Wales DJ Kevin Hughes.

"Get a Christmas Number One and you'll have a hit album and guaranteed chart success in 2000."

But also in the running is a dance remix of a song taken from the internet. The "Hamster Dance" could yet leave Cerys, Tom and Charlotte out in the cold.

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See also:
03 Dec 99 |  Entertainment
Tom singles out Cerys
08 Dec 99 |  Entertainment
Singing hamsters threaten Sir Cliff
12 Dec 99 |  Wales
Charlotte chosen to sing at Dome

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