Sarah-Jane Crawford has passed on her top tip for presenting The X Factor‘s spin-off show The Xtra Factor.

The TV presenter hosted the show last year, but following a big-shake up at The X Factor camp, she is being replaced by The Saturdays’ Rochelle Humes and comedian Melvin Odoom.

And she says that if she has anything to pass on to them from her stint on the ITV2 show, it’s to 
not be afraid of taking the mick out of boss Simon Cowell.

“I worked out early on that Simon Cowell actually likes being given cheek to, so I upped the ante with that,” says Sarah-Jane. “I think he respects someone who has an opinion. Simon wasn’t scary at all.

Sarah-Jane CrawfordSarah-Jane Crawford (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

“It was very high-pressured when it got to the live shows, but it was only pressure I was putting myself under, because I wanted to do as well as I could. You have to really immerse yourself in it.

“I’m really happy I gave it everything I had – when I look back, I’m really happy with what we created for the series. You can’t do it half-heartedly.”

The presenter, who’s leading the search for a new present on E!, reveals that one of her early TV jobs had been great live training: “I used to do a roulette show late at night, which was cheesy but cool, because it allowed me to really practise.

Simon CowellSimon Cowell (Anthony Devlin/PA)

“It was 2.00am, so no one was really watching, and if they were, they were probably back after a night out.

“It wasn’t like Saturday night [prime time] ITV, but it was a really good training ground and gave me the confidence to be live.”

The E! Host UK & Ireland search is now open. For more details on how to enter, visit www.eonline.com