Anthony Russell has opened up about battling addiction after he left The X Factor tour this year.
The X Factor 2018 finalist pulled out of the show’s 2019 live tour due to “personal reasons”.
“Due to personal circumstances I’ve had to withdraw from the tour. I’m heartbroken to miss the final shows,” he wrote on social media at the time. “It has been an honour to sing to you all and a dream come true.
“It was not a decision made lightly, but unfortunately private circumstances out of my control have meant it’s not currently possible for me to continue forward with further dates.
“I’m so so sorry to anyone who was looking forward to seeing me. I love and appreciate you all so much and it’s killing me to think anyone is going to be let down.”
Now Anthony has opened up about his personal battles in an interview with the Liverpool Echo.
“I absolutely loved the show, I absolutely loved the tour and I was having the best time of my life performing, being around the contestants and having a good time,” he recalled of being on The X Factor tour.
But Anthony added: “Unfortunately the scene wasn’t for me at that time. I was feeling weak and the team did a great job with me, I was well looked after and we just came to an agreement that at that time I wasn’t ready to be in that type of environment.”
Anthony thanked his family for being supportive as he bravely discussed struggling with addictions from the age of 11.
Following his exit from The X Factor tour, Anthony Russell has set a date of his own live concert at the O2 Academy, Liverpool, on Saturday, May 18. Tickets can be purchased here.
He will be performing songs from his time on The X Factor as well as new original music.
Anthony teased fans in a video posted to social media earlier this year: “I’ve got a lot of music coming out – big things are coming.
“So thank you so much for the love and support , everything you have been giving me man I couldn’t have done it without you.
“I’m looking forward to moving forward and smashing the life out of it – so thank you very much for coming on this journey with me.”
Anthony was mentored on last year’s X Factor by Louis Tomlinson, whom he’d become close pals with during his struggles.
He eventually finished the competition in third place, behind Dalton and Scarlett Lee.