Russia is set to storm ahead tonight, with Australia and Ukraine only distant challengers, if bookmakers’ odds are to be trusted on the day of the grand final.
Odds on Russia’s “You Are the Only One” are currently so short that winning bets will only earn punters a 50-60% return on their money. Sergey has had only a couple of serious challenges in the odds so far, with the biggest threat coming from France a couple of weeks ago; the pair briefly shared very similar odds before France’s Amir drifted, and Russia slowly – but very surely – shortened.
Australia and Ukraine have since come in to fill France’s spot as Russia’s closest competition, although both countries sit on odds some distance from the top spot. Australia’s Dami Im enjoys decimal odds of 3 to 5 across bookmakers, with Jamala a few lengths behind her, on anything from 8 to 12. France, once highly fancied, now sits in fourth place amongst bookies, with odds of 13 to 15.
Sweden, it seems, cannot be displaced from fifth, having enjoyed that position almost without change for some time. Likewise, Armenia and Malta are still locked in battle positions in sixth and seventh place.
Fight for the top ten
It is below these top seven placings that most movement is occurring right now, particularly in the scuffle for the remaining top ten placings. The UK, down on its Eurovision luck for some time, is makes a strong showing in eighth place, although on lengthy outsider odds of up to 67 for an outright win. Right behind, it appears to be a straight fight between Netherlands, Italy and Austria for the last two top ten spots, with Latvia rising to become an outside threat.
It’s not over yet…
Although bookmakers have boasted an incredibly impressive predictive record in recent contests – most notably forecasting not only the winner, but the exact order of the top five in 2015 – it is worth noting that 2016 may be an unpredictable one. Changes to the voting procedure may render old wisdoms redundant, and surprises are most certainly not ruled out in Sweden’s reimagining of the final scoring. However, fans may welcome a break from the eye-rolling predictability of Eurovision bookie success, given that betting odds have almost made it possible to know the result of modern-day Eurovision Song Contests before the actual outcome.
The current standing across bookmakers for outright winner is currently as follows: