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Former X Factor hopeful Joseph Whelan has made a second bid for stardom as the 2013 auditions reached their fourth week.

Joseph – whose rejection at boot camp proved far from popular with X Factor viewers in 2012 – received a warm reception from the judges as he returned to the audition room, with his five-year-old son Kian also invited to join him.

And the cute youngster perched on Nicole Scherzinger’s lap as his dad wowed all four with his acoustic rendition of Bon Jovi’s Always.

“It’s a pleasure to see you back…I loved your voice last year, I think I love it more this year,” Gary Barlow told him. “I think you’ve got something special.”

Louis added: “You are what this competition is all about” – before the judges sent him through to the next round.

Others making a big impact on Saturday night included Chinese student Justin Peng, who surprised the judges with his rendition of the Whitney Houston ballad I Look To You.

The 18-year-old, who now lives in Leicester, revealed he was smitten with Nicole Scherzinger and presented her with a flower upon entering the audition room – but in the end it was his singing which attracted the most attention.

“I was totally surprised,” Louis Walsh told the teenager after he had previously questioned his song choice.

Meanwhile Nicole added: “I adore you, you have a lovely voice,” – only for him to jokingly ask if he was ‘jah-mazing’, in reference to her description of Jahmene Douglas in 2012.

Others making it through included call centre operator Jayson Newland, who wowed the judges with his soulful rendition of Luther Vandross’ Never Too Much.

“You sing with such sincerity,” said Sharon Osbourne, while Louis added: “I think it’s such a waste you’re in a call centre talking to people when you could sing to them.”

As usual though it wasn’t a good night for everyone, and a trail of no-hopers were quickly given their marching orders from the room, including fast-talking female duo Duplex.

The chatty twosome claimed to be ‘two parts of the same person’, but ultimately left Gary unimpressed.

“You really are one and the same person, you both can’t sing,” he complained, while Sharon added: “You look fantastic, but you come in here and you’re like two Vicky Pollards.”

Loved-up twosome Green Boots – consisting of boyfriend and girlfriend Patricia and Dean – also failed to spread the love among the judges as they delivered their rendition of A Whole New World.

“Your brains are clearly on another planet because your singing is really bad,” Gary complained, while Louis regrettably told them: ‘It’s a no, but we do like you as a couple.”

The auditions will continue on Sunday night at 8pm as the latest batch of hopefuls reach Wembley.