With a strong favourite in tonight's Britain's Got Talent final Mike Norman tells us how favourites have performed in previous years, and why perhaps wagering in another BGT market is the best option this evening...
"But they're destined to perform well and finish on the podium, so at around [1.9] to finish in the Top 3 then that's probably the best bet of the night."
"If there's one golden rule when betting on Britain's Got Talent semi-finals then it's a very simple one. Oppose the favourites at your peril!"
The above are my exact words before last week's live shows commenced, and as it turned out the favourites would go on to win every one of the five semi-finals.
But for whatever reason, this golden beach that I'm now relaxing on is extremely deserted, and there's no sign of a chauffeur-driven limousine ready to drive me to New York for a shopping spree.
But perhaps that's because the only beach surrounding me is the effect of the laminated floor in my room as I pen this preview. That's right folks, I didn't back all the favourites either!
Having said that, three winning bets from five recommendations isn't a bad return, and at least we're in front on the competition. The dilemma now is, where to place our profit on tonight's final. Do we try and get the favourites beat, or do we ignore them and play in the other markets instead?
Whilst the favourites in BGT semi-finals tend to always deliver, it's a much different story when it comes to the final. Paul Potts was favourite to win in the first ever series, and he duly delivered, but since then it's been a bit of a graveyard for favourite backers.
In 2008, 12-year-old mezzo-soprano Faryl Smith was a strong favourite to win but didn't even finish in the top three - street dancer George Sampson taking the honours.
And the following year saw the biggest 'shock' of the series to date, red hot favourite Susan Boyle losing out to Diversity in the final.
Well-fancied dance troupe Spellbound did deliver for favourite backers in 2010, but they were only marginal favourites in a wide open final.
But come 2011 the curse of the odds-on shots struck again, strong favourite Ronan Parke losing out to Jai McDowall, while last year, Charlotte and Jonathan - who traded at odds-on for much of the series - also lost out, to a dog act no less!
So four favourites beat in the last five years isn't exactly what you want to hear if you've lumped on shadow dance troupe Attraction to win tonight. But perhaps significantly, the four favourites that have been defeated were all singers, while the only favourites to prevail were indeed a dance troupe.
My gut feeling is that Attraction will once again steal the show this evening, and they will win, but they're just [1.28] to back at the time of writing and at that price, they're not worth risking.
The case for them is huge. They grab the audience's attention, they tell moving stories, they're slick, brilliant at what they do, and they even reduce Simon Cowell to tears.
The case for them not to win is only a small one. They're not British. So what?
The title Britain's Got Talent obviously doesn't mean that only British acts can enter, otherwise Attraction - who are from Hungary - wouldn't be here. Perhaps the programme title means that the competition is a talent show held in Britain, and anyone can enter. Attraction are the best act seen in it this year, and they ought to win.
But if like me, [1.28] isn't your cup of tea then where else do we look? Teenage comedian Jack Carroll ([8.2]) is sure to be popular, young vocal act Luminites ([24.0]) are very likeable, and singer/songwriter Gabrielle Gardiner ([300.0]) will have a number one record in the future.
Unfortunately however I don't see any of the above acts being good enough to trouble Attraction, which just leaves me to ponder how to play operatic duo Richard and Adam ([20.0]).
Other than the favourites I firmly believe these brothers are genuine stars of the future - which in my book means they'll record a few albums, sell a few million copies, and appear on Dancing On Ice in a few year's time.
But the sorry tale of vocal acts in the BGT final weighs heavily on my mind. If Susan Boyle, and Charlotte and Jonathan can't win at odds-on, then Richard and Adam are unlikely to win either.
But they're destined to perform well and finish on the podium, so at around [1.9] to finish in the Top 3 then that's probably the best bet of the night.
There is a wildcard slot tonight of course, and the betting suggests that ventriloquist Steve Hewlett could be the act to get it. But with my 12-year-old daughter not being well at the moment I said I'd cheer her up by quoting exactly what she said on the 'wildcard'. So take it away Sasha;
"If the public didn't vote them in the top three, or if they were in the top three and then the judges didn't pick them, then what's the point of bringing them back?"
My thoughts exactly.