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Dublin: 10 °C Saturday 8 August, 2020

Jed we can: Twins to perform for Obama... if they win on Saturday

The Sun says a victorious Jedward would be booked to entertain President Obama – as the bookies slash the odds on an Irish win.

Image: Frank Augstein/AP

IRELAND’S EUROVISION HOPEFULS Jedward could be lined up as official entertainment for Barack and Michelle Obama during their trip to Ireland in two weeks’ time – but only if they win the contest on Saturday night.

The madcap Lucan twins sailed into the decider after a storming performance of their song ‘Lipstick’ in last night’s second semi-final – and are now ranked as one of the bookies’ favourites to prevail in the grand finale.

And the Sun this morning reports that the stakes have been further raised for Saturday’s showpiece by revealing that the twins could be booked to perform for the US president when he travels here in two weeks’ time.

Leigh Holmwood quotes one (he, forgivably, doesn’t seem to know which) of the twins who offered, “If we win Eurovision and get to perform for Obama that would be the ultimate…”, predictably not finishing the sentence, before adding of Obama:

He’s even bigger than Simon Cowell!

The twins – and indeed their trademark quiffs – have become a worldwide talking point, having managed to feature in the Wall Street Journal, the Huffington Post, and even the New York Times in the last day alone.

Such was the reception to last night’s semi-final that bookmakers Paddy Power have now ranked them as second-favourites to win the contest outright, priced at 4/1, behind only the French entrant Amaury Vassili who is the 6/4 favourite.

Even when Paddy Power’s natural pro-Hiberbian bias is shunned in favour of the more global Betfair, the boys are priced at 6.8 by the world’s punters – again, only behind the French entry.

At those odds, if we were to empty the €15bn left in the National Pension Reserve Fund and back the boys, we could win €87bn – enough not only to cover the entire cost of the EU-IMF bailout, but also to close the budget deficit this year as demanded by Morgan Kelly.

The omens are less promising if we take a hard-nosed statistical view of Jedward’s prospects, however: Google’s daily Eurovision tracker has shown Germany’s reigning champion Lena pulling back to tie with the boys.

Both acts are tied behind the Armenian entry Emmy – but Google’s run of predicting the correct winner for the last few years may perhaps be at an end, given that Emmy was eliminated in Tuesday’s first semi-final.

NUI Maynooth’s electoral geographer Adrian Kavanagh has been crunching the numbers – and has also found that not only will Jedward’s uptempo ‘Lipstick’ be nestled among a clutch of similarly styled tunes, making it potentially difficult for the lads to stand out, but that the 6th spot has not been particularly kind to finalists in the past.

Roll in the usual geographical hurdles that Ireland faces – not having any close neighbours with a major diaspora, barring of course the UK – and the positivity is tempered further.

Still, we trust the bookies to know these things – and with France taking the bizarre step of submitting a song sung entirely through Corsican, Saturday could indeed turn out to be a good night for those who like Danish-written earworms chanted by hyperactive Irish teenagers – and for those who’d like to see the Leader of the Free World tap his feet to it at College Green in a fortnight’s time.

Jed we can.

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About the author:

Gavan Reilly

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