The X Factor 2009 has reached the bootcamp stage, with the successful acts from the auditions being put through their paces.

And this year bootcamp has proven to be more challenging than ever. The first task of the day saw the hopefuls having to form teams of three and choose a song to perform in front of the judges – with instant elimination facing those who were not up to scratch.

Some contestants found themselves at a disadvantage as a result – notably solo singer Sian Paley, who was reduced to tears when twin duo John and Edward sung over her lines.

“You’ve showcased yourselves, but you have probably put Sian at a disadvantage,” Simon Cowell told them.

However Louis Walsh championed the Irish duo, despite Cowell’s reservations – and they made it through to the next stage, while Sian was sent home.

Others to bite the dust included duos It Takez 2 and Just Du-et, who stumbled their way through a song by The Script.

However there was better news for three of the solo girl singers, Londoners Graziella, Shar and Shaniece.

After wowing the judges with their team performance – “that’s what I call absolutely killing it!” Cheryl Cole told them – the trio were told they would only progress to the next stage if they agreed to stay as a trio. They agreed, and so made it through to the next round as a girl group.

Others who were successful included Welsh songstress Lucie Jones, American student Ethan Boroian and teenager Rachel Adedeji.

Of the 200 acts who made it through to boot camp, only 50 now remain – with the final 24 who will have the chance to perform at the judges’ houses to be revealed on Sunday night’s show.