Odds meet reality for the first time tonight, as nineteen countries battle for ten places in the first semifinal of the Eurovision Song Contest 2018.
Cyprus now tops the table of most likely qualifiers from the initial live show. Eleni moved into overall favourite position to win the contest late last night, shifting an Israel that looked unbudgeable for weeks. Odds on previous list-topper Netta still look safe as houses tonight, however, with barely a hair’s breadth separating the top two countries in qualification markets.
Dead certs? Or surprises ahead?
It is telling how little value there is in a successful bet on each – punters will gain as little as one-hundredth of their stake in profit on Cyprus, and one-fiftieth on Israel.
Still, there are always surprises. Last year, bookmakers’ odds predicted nine out of ten of the qualifiers from both the first and second semifinals, with a shock Finnish exit from the first show. Nonetheless, if a repeat performance is on the cards, tonight’s top ten could look a lot like this:
- Czech Republic
Struggling to impress punters enough to break the top ten before the show are:
- FYR Macedonia
Do you expect another great result for the bookies? Or do they have it wrong this year? Which songs will be the happy – and the sad – surprises this year? Fans will get their very first answers in just a few hours.