On the face of it there’s no contest between the male and female dancers ahead of this year’s Strictly Come Dancing final.
Representing the Girls we have the heavily fancied Caroline Flack and Frankie Bridge, with a female winner priced at a shockingly short 1/10 with Ladbrokes.
Meanwhile, male counterparts Simon Webbe and Mark Wright are the rank outsiders with either of the pair to triumph available at 11/2.
But as Mark showed when deposing of former favourite Jake Wood in the recent semi-final, Strictly is a show that knows how to throw up an upset.
Here’s our take on the battle of the sexes ahead of the final showpiece.
The case for the Girls
Without meaning to state the obvious, Caroline and Frankie have been streets ahead of Simon and Mark.
TV presenter Caroline even managed to coax the first ‘10’ of the series from miserly judge Craig Revel-Horwood last week and it’s no surprise to see the bookies have this down as a straight fight between the pair.
Meanwhile, rival Frankie has boasted the highest average score of all the contestants throughout the competition and is yet to face a dreaded dance-off.
Why the Boys can spring a surprise
Over 11 series of Strictly the boys shade the number of winners with male dancers landing the Glitterball trophy on six occasions.
The odds suggest that the girls will level it up this year but as we’ve seen in rival reality shows recently, shocks (certainly in betting terms) aren’t all that rare.
We’re looking at you Carl Fogarty.
And both Simon and Mark have form in that department.
Perennial survivor Simon stayed in the competition at the expense of hot favourite Pixie Lott while Mark’s ousting of Jake was another remarkable escape act.
Head judge Len Goodman had the deciding vote in both cases, choosing to go with his feelings of how the dancers performed that night rather than being swayed by public appeal or favouritism.
And as both of our boys have shown already, they’re more than capable of nailing it when it really matters.
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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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