Official Chart Flashback 2016: ZAYN's One Direction era is History as PILLOWTALK hits Number 1

This week in 2016, Zayn Malik beat his former bandmates to the top spot

March 25 2015: a date we'll never forget. One week after dipping out of One Direction's On the Road Again Tour, Zayn Malik officially left the group citing a need for 'some private time.'

Fast forward 11 months to February 2016, and Zayn Malik is back. He now goes by ZAYN (all caps, very edgy), is dating supermodel Gigi Hadid and returns armed with a monster debut solo single.

PILLOWTALK - written by ZAYN and produced by M.I.A. and Sia collaborator Levi Lennox - saw him shed his boyband past with a few swears and a saucy music video to boot.

But was it enough to see him beat off competition from former bandmates Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne and Niall Horan?

MORE: One Direction's biggest solo singles revealed

Released on January 29 2016, PILLOWTALK found itself fighting it out against One Direction's final (for now) single History.

Having first charted in November 2015, History had been creeping up the Official Singles Chart ever since. Could it prove competition for CAPS LOCK ZAYN in the Number 1 race?

Well, no.

PILLOWTALK stormed straight to Number 1 in its opening week, at that point becoming the fastest-selling single of 2016; boasting 4.97 million streams and 112,000 combined chart units.

Meanwhile, One Direction's History slipped to Number 9 in its ninth week on chart.

To date, PILLOWTALK has racked up over 1.4 million UK chart units, including 133 million UK streams.

Elsewhere on the Official Top 10 this week in 2016, Jonas Blue and Dakota's cover of Fast Car rose one spot to its peak (2), while Rihanna and Drake's Work vaulted nine into the Top 10 (4). Justin Bieber was doing alright for himself, too. Both Love Yourself (5) and Sorry (7) remained Top 10.

It was a big week for Lukas Graham, with 7 Years jumping 18 spots (6), as Craig David and Big Narstie's When The Bassline Drops broke into the Top 10 for the first time (10).

Check out the full Official Singles Chart from this week in 2016 here.

Listen to the UK Top 40 from this week in 2016 on Spotify below. Also available on Apple Music | Deezer

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