Margaret To Topple Emmelie

May 18, 2013 by

Margaret To Topple Emmelie

As Faithless once sang, ‘This is my church’. And trading Eurovision markets really is MY CHURCH. ESC season is a pure delight, this past fortnight has flown by far too quickly, and win, lose or draw life will feel a lot emptier tomorrow morning.

In Baku last year, the value seeker in me searched far and wide trying to unearth a nation that might upset hot favourite Sweden. Ultimately, there was an overriding sense this was a fruitless task and Loreen was the proverbial ESC steering job.

This year feels a little different. Denmark may well end up going and doing a Loreen but watching the jury performance last night I was left with the impression Emmelie could, just could have a glass jaw and we could see the hot fav turned over.

Wishful thinking, who knows, but ‘Only Teardrops’ did not look or sound like a song head and shoulders above the rest of the field despite SVT giving it the clothes of a winner in terms of staging effects.

Denmark has a position in a fearsomely strong part of the draw and the 2 solo males she is squeezed between in Hungary and Iceland held their own and were far from eclipsed during the jury performance. ByeAlex has been one of the conundrums of ESC 2013. Kedvesem cast its spell over the Arena audience last night who clapped along to this enchanting tune.

And then Iceland’s Eythor arrives on stage and proceeds to power out the Icelandic ballad in quite mesmerising style. In terms of shock winners of ESC 2013 these 2 have to be at the top of the list, Hungary worth backing at 200-1 e/w first 4, and Iceland at 150-1 e/w first 4.

Hungary is the more speculative of the two and also worth backing to finish top 10 at 6-1. Iceland looks a very solid top 10 proposition and merits a bigger investment at 7-2.

Watching last night, I was trying to figure out the jury top 5 and have doubts Denmark will figure that highly on the jury scale. Also, given the widespread discontent regarding perceived favouritism towards it, this could see some jurors particularly stingy in their Danish scoring.

If there is one song that looks the most likely to defeat Denmark, then it remains Norway. Margaret Berger brought her a-game to the performance that mattered last night and properly smashed ‘I Feed You My Love’. We would strongly advise jumping all over the 15-2 offered by Betfred.

The persistent doubt hanging over this song is its ability to strike a chord with viewers at home. Arriving after Marco’s sullen crooning for Italy, Margaret really does have impact from the 24 slot and it would be surprising if it doesn’t resonate powerfully with the tv audience tonight. We would also advise backing Norway in the ‘without Denmark’ market at 3-1 with Skybet and Betfred.

Following Norway comes Georgia and again, Nodi and Sophie saved one of their most powerful renditions of ‘Waterfall’ for the big one last night. Georgia was a nation flagged up here a long while back as this year’s potential default winner of ESC 2013.

The case put forward for Georgia was on the proviso of a late draw. It has that late draw in 25 so Georgia remains a very solid looking e/w proposition and has drifted to a remarkably generous 33-1 e/w first 4 with Coral that looks well worth getting stuck into.

Georgia faces strong competition in the east from Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Russia. But it trumps them all in terms of running order, and the feel-good factor of this male/female duet really shone through last night.

There are certainly bigger doubts over those other 3. The staging of ‘Hold Me’ looks a little contrived and while the song is strong Farid’s vocal isn’t. Zlata has one of the best voices in the competition but the fact remains ‘Gravity’ is a difficult song to get to grips with on first listen and ultimately a saccharine dirge, despite Ukraine’s best efforts to make it look and sound more substantial than it is.

The worry with Ukraine is, we know how subjective jurors can be and Zlata may be able to do a similar job conning viewers tonight. If this truly is a song contest Ukraine should be dropping down the leaderboard but it’s not one to be red on – a press release was going round yesterday with Zlata pleading for votes in the Balkans because of her parentage in that part of the world.

Yet another piece of the relentless Ukraine PR we have endured this year. Expect to see more press releases later today telling everyone her favourite is Greek salad, she loves David Cameron, and cannot wait to visit her favourite city of Paris later this year etc etc.

Russia, from the 10 slot, looks in danger of getting somewhat lost on the night and remains an old-fashioned ESC-by-numbers effort you can imagine jurors being tough with despite Dina putting in a decent vocal last night. The staging of it makes it look especially lame and rather too calculated. For all these reasons there is a solid case to lay Russia for top 10 at anything around 1.33 on Betfair.

The last nation that cannot be discounted from a high finish tonight, more so due to the fact you sense it will be pushing for a very high jury total, is The Netherlands.

Anouk performs following the break. This allows ‘Birds’ to shine as effectively the 1st song of the 2nd half of the show. This year’s ESC sees a lot of gimmicks thrown at entries and as stated throughout the rehearsal period ‘Birds’ succeeds in its stripped back simplicity.

Anouk has the insane Romanian production combined with Cesar’s high pitched vocal following her which is also possibly in The Netherlands favour.

It is a song of haunting beauty – a thoroughly non-ESC offering that is a big part of its USP – and it could yet capture enough viewers’ imaginations to do much better than many people are expecting on the televote side of things. The Netherlands should also be backed e/w first 4 at 33-1 with Coral.

This year’s running order has made things even harder for songs on early and it would come as no surprise if the first 12 songs all miss out on a top 10 finish. Germany had the look of a strong top 10 candidate IF Natalie sang it well enough in front of the juries. The worry now is that last night she put in a mediocre effort at best and juries may have been tough on Cascada.

Like Germany, Greece has the look of a huge televote earner tonight but again the concern remains jurors might be tough on Koza Mostra.

Just to reiterate, it would come as no surprise to see Denmark win tonight but this site’s approach to tv betting markets is in unearthing value. So, the top 10 predicted here:

1. Norway
2. Georgia
3. The Netherlands
4. Iceland
5. Denmark
6. Azerbaijan
7. Ukraine
8. Greece
9. Italy
10. Hungary

Any stand-out bets discovered later today will be added to the Comments section below. Where is your money going this year? Please do share your ‘value’ selections on the ESC 2013 markets here too.

49 Comments

  1. Anonymous

    Hi Rob. Out of interest where do you think Bonnie Tyler might end up on the scoreboard? I backed her to score under 81 pts a couple of weeks ago. I’m still pretty happy with the bet but do you have any thoughts.

    • Rob

      Find that very difficult to answer. My instinct says Bonnie will finish around 18th, possibly lower. Not sure what that will equate to in pts but less than 81 looks a wise play.

  2. Rob! You naughty naughty boy. You put Netherlands on 3! I find that, uhm, an honor, but a bit too risky if you ask me :-). When I look at your TOP 10 prediction, I feel that I’m looking at the 100% jury result.

    I do agree with you thought that Norway could well be the winner tonight. Margaret has got haunting, Robyn-like looks. And I feel she could very well win the jury vote, and then not winning the televote, but still enough to slightly win the 50%/50% tally.

    So once again, my TOP 10 prediction:
    01. Noorwegen
    02. Denmark
    03. Greece
    04. Finland
    05. Oekraïne
    06. Azerbeidzjan
    07. Italië
    08. Rusland
    09. Nederland
    10. Georgië

  3. Bruce

    I think its a year of great uncertainty and a value approach is definitely the way to proceed.

    I also believe the draw factor has been over estimated and over bet and frankly I’d be amazed if your predicted weighting, almost a lock for the second half, comes to pass.

    My other comment is about the relative strength of SF2 v SF1. Only of course my personal song taste and preferences but for me SF1 was far superior. Again the opposite of your selected 10.

    My value plays as I put up yesterday remain Estonia and Belgium top 10 as both can be had at 10+ on Betfair.

    I’m also anti Marge at the prices now, despite it being my favourite song by far on first listen. I don’t think it will connect with televoters enough with its slightly cold feel and staging.

    Betting wise my largest stake is Netherlands top 10 so I hope you are right with that one and Gert has something to celebrate also.

    Netherlands and Italy my value win bets also in the hope a sufficently good jury vote has taken place already and one of them inspires Europe sufficiently to vote.

    Good luck all tonight.

  4. Bruce

    I see you have 3 from the 1st half Rob now on second look which is in line with the most extreme split seen in recent years so my second half lock comment is wrong.

    My feeling remains however that it could be 50/50 or even in favour of the first half

    • Rob

      Hi Bruce. I am happy to find ones in the 1st half if in my view the nations in question have strong enough songs. Estonia and Albania last year really stood out.

      But this year I find it hard to make a strong top 10 case for anything in the 1st half.

      My thinking isn’t influenced by the draw; purely that the stronger songs, imho, have landed mostly in the 2nd half of the final this year.

      It’s a very tricky year to work out, esp. given the new scoring system.

  5. Matt

    OK time to put my money where my mouth is:

    Got a sinking feeling Denmark will get home but, as Rob says, value is king so the top 15 is

    Norway
    Denmark
    Azerbaijan
    Russia
    Italy
    Netherlands
    Georgia
    Greece
    Ukraine
    Hungary
    Estonia
    Germany
    Moldova
    Sweden

    Really struggling to split Estonia and Hungary so have taken both to finish top ten at very big prices.

    Good luck guys

  6. Matt

    Cleverer people than me will have seen that is only 14 – Forgot Iceland. Think they will come just out top 10, perhaps 14th?

  7. fiveleaves

    Cheers for the excellent coverage again this Rob.

    This year has been the trickiest of the 4 years I’ve bet heavily on Eurovision.
    I wouldn’t be surprised by any winner, or any top 10.

    With my favourite 4 songs drawn 13 or lower, in Lithuania, Belgium, Malta & Netherlands plus the likes of Russia, Estonia, Finland & Moldova in with good shouts of top 10’s, I’m not with you on the 2nd half being stronger.
    I will certainly prefer the 1st half as a fan anyway.

    For me the voting order points east for various reasons, so I have topped up on Russsia. The big hitter and mother country in the east.

    Anouk still my biggest green by far, but if she doesn’t win then despite it being a loser for me, I hope Norway wins.

    I’d rather see a victory for a song with some originality than the formulaic entries of the likes of Denmark, Russia, Georgia, etc
    Ukraine isn’t even a song so I won’t include that in either category. It’s just a woman posing and showing off her vocal prowess for 3 minutes.
    I thought this was a song contest.
    Things will be thrown at the TV if she pulls off a win 😀

    • Rob

      Good luck, fig – it certainly has been the toughest ESC since EntOdds was founded. As stated previously the hugely profitable Contests of 2010 & 2011 feel like a distant memory.

      We can blame SVT for one for dictating r.o. to ensure all songs contrast one another and the new scoring system, which puts a giant question mark over the whole thing.

      re. Ukraine – have learned not to trust the tastes of juries & that potentially leaked semi 1 result on the SVT site had Ukraine 2nd in semi 1 behind Denmark.

      • Matt

        Hi Rob

        Was that the list that placed Lithuania third? If so, that seems far fetched surely?

        Im keeping away from Ukraine though for safe measure.

  8. Rob

    In 2006, none of the first 9 songs got into the top 10. I would give Moldova a sporting chance of top 10, obviously Russia is in the mix, & Germany, & possibly Finland but overall see other nations with stronger claims.

    My verdict not really about looking at early draw as a negative. If there was a song like Estonia/Albania in there, would be happy to include.

  9. Rob

    Not much to report from 3rd rehearsal. Natalie was better for Cascada today – can really see the Arena getting into ‘Glorious’.

    We are all scratching our heads. Denmark will obviously get a decent score from Sweden – 2nd to announce. Italy could well get high pts from San Marino & Albania so possibility for the Italy price to come in during early in-running.

  10. Tim B

    Hi Rob, many thanks for your excellent coverage over the course of ESC and the entire national final season.

    That’s an interesting top 10 you’ve posted above. I don’t see Ukraine in there – I strongly believe Russia is a much more solid and appealing package, and combined with Russia’s vastly superior voting power, should be enough to see Russia ahead of Ukraine. I also really struggle to see Italy in the top 10 despite the draw. I won’t go as far as predicting an entire top 10 but I will say that I have value bets on Iceland (19.5!), Armenia, Estonia and Hungary. Think there are solid claims for each to be challenging for top 10.

    Top 4 prediction in order is as follows: 1. Denmark 2. Azerbaijan 3. Russia 4. Norway

    Would be thrilled to see Emmelie beaten but personally it’s not something I would bet against.

    Best of luck to everyone and have fun!

    • Matt

      Interesting Tim

      I have backed Russia over Ukraine too. Its certainly a better song with more voting power. Then i see Rob, Eurovicious not placing it top ten – its a puzzle…

    • Tim B

      3 of the top 4 predicted in their correct positions, I’ll take that!!! Figured Denmark’s win would harm Norway to the extent that Marge was unlikely to get 2nd or 3rd.

      Won on some of my big lays – successfully layed Finland, Sweden for top 10, Germany top 4. But lost on Ukraine top 5, top 10, Italy top 10 lays. Wish I’d layed Germany top 10 too…the song was plain poor and irrelevant but so many people fancied it for top 10 that I didn’t bother. Won on Winner Without Denmark: Azerbaijan and a large bet on Azerbaijan top 3.

      Semi final results had some surprises. Russia were painfully close to winning semi final 1 when you think about it. If Ukraine had flopped to the extent that many thought, say, placing 6th or 7th in the semi, then Russia would’ve pipped Denmark.

      My lessons & advice; A rule of a maximum 3 ex-USSRs and 2 Scandinavian countries in the top 10 is one to SWEAR BY. Georgia and Iceland flopped here because despite being very competent entries, their region-specific competition was stronger.

      It’s relatively safe to take on camp, trashy upbeat pop songs in particular markets. The likes of Germany, Finland and Belarus were never likely to score well. Backing uptempo songs to land in the top 10 is actually very very risky. The only two proper uptempos in the top 10 this year were Greece and Malta. These are both authentic, credible entries with much wider-appeal than fanboy tastes. Both standalone as decent songs outside of a Eurovision context.

      Looking forward to the split results. Denmark will have won the televote, but did they win the jury vote? If they did, it wouldn’t have been by much. I’m wondering if Ukraine won possibly won the jury vote? Might help explain part of their success. Azerbaijan will have been 2nd in the televote and probably top 3 in the jury vote. Romania’s 13th place will mean that they were likely top 10 in the televote.

      I’ll see you in Denmark next year, Rob! Think I will probably make a week of it. I hope they go for Copenhagen and not some more “high-value” location.

  11. Boki

    It’s amazing how I’m switching from one view to another. At the end, have Ukraine highest despite all shortcomings. I’m laying both Russia and Georgia for top4 (took some higher prices earlier), also top10 lay for both – there is no place for all.

  12. Someone in here should ask himself what the following countries will vote:

    – Slovenia
    – Croatia
    – Serbia
    – Montenegro
    – FYR Macedonia
    – Albania
    – Cyprus
    – Bulgaria
    – Romania

    These Balkan-countries and sub-Balkan countries will most likely vote for Greece. I should focus on this TOP 5:
    1) Norway
    2) Denmark
    3) GREECE
    4) Ukraine
    5) Azerbeidzjan or Georgia

    Concerning Russia? I think it’s quite safe to say that Azerbeidzjan, Georgia AND Ukraine will do better than Russia tonight. They have better running orders, better songs.

    • Matt

      Have taken into account the Greece boost from the missing Balkans Gert but came up with somewhere between 5 and 10. I think the juries will keep it down but i accept the televote makes it a contender.

      Thanks Rob for all your efforts – couldnt do it without you!

  13. Boki

    Forgot to thank you for all the coverage Rob and best of luck tonight!

  14. Ben Gray

    BIG WRITE-UP TIME:

    Hi Rob, thanks again for your great coverage this year. I am a virgin to serious ESC betting although did win a pleasant £190 on Azerbaijan in 2011 on little more than the visual impact the pyro curtain had on me during the semi-final, and gut instinct that it was going to turn out to be the best song after all.

    My logic is going to stand apart from most other people’s, but in my experience – the top 5 each year (quite possibly in the entire history of ESC but don’t quote me) have mostly consisted of the closest possible thing to a pan-European hit, performed well. This holds up under the now “old” 50/50 system with song and sometimes staging overcoming poor or even non-existent (Hadise) vocals. The key here is being able to tell the hits apart from trash. Easier for some, but I believe I have a good ear for it.

    There are some exceptions of course, and I label these broadly as classy/timeless/high-calibre songs such as It’s My Time, Madness Of Love, Nije Ljubav Stvar, Molitva, Suus etc. and Birds could potentially be added to that list tonight.

    The other exception being what I describe as accessible novelties. Accessible being the key word there so as to separate the likes of Verka, Lordi and the Babushki from Kresiraadio and Gypsy.cz

    Coming back round to the “hits” which by far are the most common occurrence in the top 5 since at least since 2008, I must stress that this does not mean the songs have been or actually will go on to be pan-European chart hits, because we all know this doesn’t happen very often. It is the worthiness that counts. It’s about taking a song outside of the Eurovision bubble and seeing if it would survive in the real world.

    Top fives include Believe, Shady Lady, (played on Capital.FM once in the run up to Belgrade!) Secret Combination, Qele Qele, Hold On Be Strong… Fairytale, (baffles me really but it did make an impact on the European charts so I can only bow out there,) Is It True? (still a regular on various Scandinavian radio stations), Always, (made an impact in Poland of all places!) Dum Tek Tek (released in Japan!!)… Satellite, We Could Be The Same, Playing With Fire, In A Moment Like This (a bit of an anomaly, will come to that later,) Drip Drop, even Me and My Guitar… Running Scared (can easily see that as one of those songs played over the season finale of an American drama, those are always hits!) Popular, Angel, (radio-friendly enough but greatly helped by the staging,) New Tomorrow, (and not forgetting I Can, 5th on televotes) Euphoria, When The Music Dies, (first thought when I listened to it was Christina Aguilera,)… so really the evidence is here.

    Maybe some of you can’t see any of these songs standing up in their own right on radio stations across Europe, even if they’re just regional hits with some broader appeal that don’t get picked up. I certainly can see that people are going for the closest possible thing to the familiar current pop sound.

    Now the anomalies, a few have come up. Schmaltz tends to be one. In A Moment Like This as mentioned earlier had the very familiar rings of The Police and Tina Turner which may have helped matters, and if it was an 80s song, it certainly represented what was great about 80s pop, unlike That Sounds Good To Me. This is further evidenced with Running Scared which at the time I called a calculated, younger, fresher approach to the very idea of In A Moment Like This, which if you remember, was one place above Drip Drop in a year Azerbaijan were sure it had sewn up. Waterfall is another big schmaltzy number very much in the same 80s power ballad vein that I am expecting to do just as well on the same grounds tonight.

    The other anomaly is tricky to spot. Duds. Songs that sound like perfectly performed radio fare and end up dropping like a stone because frankly they’re just a bit dull, or very poorly performed on the night. Should’ve Known Better and In Love For A While and Stay ring as examples here.

    So with my theory which seems to stand up all laid out here… some of you already know what I think but I’ll make my case anyway. This is a year full of Eurovision-by-numbers songs and a lot of ballads, very few of which have any radio appeal. The only stand out songs for me here which have that chart-worthiness, radio-friendliness and the ability to appeal beyond their own country or bloc, and are also performed well enough are those from Finland, Azerbaijan, Belgium, and to a lesser extent, Russia, Denmark, Norway, the UK, Lithuania and Ireland.

    No, I’m not saying all these countries are going to do very well tonight as some of them won’t be performed as well as their studio versions promise.

    But ultimately, I turn on BBC Radio 1, I know what I always hear these days, and I know whatever makes it into our charts from the continent is one thing. Dance music. Dance music with some R&B and hip-hop thrown in here and there is the undisputed king of the European charts in most countries right now.

    With a world-famous act like Cascada, a song that is already getting some airplay around the continent, including here in the UK, a mind blowing live vocal in just about every performance I’ve seen and heard, (including over escXtra’s stream for the jury final last night Rob, apart from a backing singer at the start I am not sure what you mean by mediocre, she sounded great to me,) and ultimately, a production quality on the music and blatant current commercial relevance, I just can’t see anything realistically beating Germany.

    The draw has cut her chances somewhat, including an irritating #18 for Denmark since all winners have come from positions 17-24 since 2005, but she is part of the tentpole that SVT appear to have set up with the running order so is not out of the game. The Babushki finished a mere ten points behind Loreen last year on televoting alone from position #6, and both Iceland and Azerbaijan did very well for themselves in 2009 from positions 7 and 11 respectively, so I maintain that anything is possible.

    Denmark is dressed to win, but the song doesn’t excite me. In the first semi final when I saw it on TV for the first time, I thought it looked more like a winner than it sounded like one. When it was chosen in the Danish MGP, the general consensus was, as someone else said, that something better would come along. Denmark became fan favourite by default with the sense that nothing did. I also have a theory that with Glorious being accused of plagiarising Euphoria and failing to capture the imagination of the fan bubble by being so blatantly mainstream and commonplace, people have turned a blind eye to it. I remember one fan on ESCtoday writing after Lena’s victory in 2010 “how did that win?? It’s so normal!” Hardly a consensus but an eye-opener for me.

    I have covered my many bets on Germany to take it home tonight with a top 10 bet to refund them all if they don’t. If I’m wrong, I’m wrong. I just really don’t think I am.

    Good luck to everyone tonight, and whatever happens, may the best song win.

    • Rob

      Great post, Ben. I would have been very strong on a Germany top 10 finish had Natalie sung ‘Glorious’ the way she did in the earlier 1st rehearsal.

      It will ‘go big in the hall’ tonight for sure & could be top 10 but it is really hard to find anything at a decent price that looks guaranteed top 10 this year.

      We are all striving to come up with ‘rules of success’ at the ESC but the bottom line is, it’s an ever-evolving Contest & especially with the scoring change this year no one can be confident how it will play out tonight. good luck 🙂

      • Ben Gray

        Well, how about that. I was wrong.

        • Rob

          I expect Germany suffered on the jury ranking, Ben, as Nat definitely didn’t produce her best on the Friday night. A lot of people got it wrong this year so don’t feel too disappointed Ben 🙂

  15. Rob

    A couple of possible value bets:

    Malta vs Iceland – Iceland 3-4 bwin

    Sweden vs Finland – Finland 13-10 bwin

    Looking at the market for last place, everything points to Spain but there is often an upset in this market.

    Prefer small bets on Sweden at 40-1 (BetVictor) & Belarus at 10-1.

    Also 28-1 Sweden – to finish last, 2nd last or 3rd last, a fifth the odds a place.

  16. Rob

    Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to post comments during the ESC coverage this year. Good luck to all readers this evening 🙂

  17. steve

    Cheers as ever johnny, best of luck with your bets for tonight.

  18. Andy

    Bet365 offering 1/4 for Norway to pick up at least 1 maximum.

    Same firm got Denmark maximum spread at 10.5

    Germany 6/5 for 1 maximum, Tempting.

  19. Rob

    8 out of 10 among the top 10. Norway 4th – a brave effort from Marge.

    Anyone snap up the 1.3 Denmark in-running? Despite Ukraine closing, it was as good as a cert because of juries to come.

    Hungary top 10 a great result. Sweden, out of top 10 an even better result. Ukraine, I feared would do better than expected. Georgia well and truly lost in the east.

    Azerbaijan is the ultimate C&D ESC country. Another top 4.

    Malta the only nation along with Russia to achieve top 10 among first 10 countries.

    Only 3 in 1st half make the top 10 – Malta, Russia & Netherlands

    All went pretty much as expected. Profits down this year – the toughest ESC yet.

    Anyone win big? Already counting down the days to, presumably Copenhagen next year. It’s been a blast, as always.

    Well done Denmark backers.

    • Matt

      Nine out of ten for me Rob. Will be my biggest ESC ever…

      Appreciate all your help

  20. Rob

    semi 1 result:

    http://www.eurovision.tv/page/history/by-year/contest?event=1783#Scoreboard

    1. Denmark
    2. Russia
    3. Ukraine

    semi 2 result:

    http://www.eurovision.tv/page/history/by-year/contest?event=1793#Scoreboard

    1. Azerbaijan
    2. Greece
    3. Norway

    Georgia – 10th!!!!!

  21. Bruce

    Well done Rob and Matt.

    Finland lay for tiop 10 my personal highlight for bragging rights against those that liked it but Netherlands and Italy top 10’s made thing profitable.

    Belgium overtaken with a few juries left – would have been the real icing on the cake but c’est la vie

    You were right about the strength of the second half right enough.

    I learnt some important lessons last year and keeping the hot favourite onside throughout was the main one.

    Any song with ding dong? – forget it lol

  22. Andy

    Couldn’t help laughing at Lena giving Norway 10 points.
    Whoops.

  23. Rob

    Thanks again to all those who contributed to the Comments section here throughout ESC 2013 season.

    Value approach really didn’t pay off this year. Managed to get Ireland matched at average odds of 60 to finish last – a rare piece of value seeking that paid off.

    But lays of Ukraine top 3 semi 1, & Azerbaijan top 3 in semi 2 didn’t pay off. And nor did the lay of Russia for top 10.

    Seems Georgia suffered as the cheesy power ballad whereas Russia & Ukraine succeeded. As for Azer’s top 4 placing again & semi 2 victory… it is clearly dangerous to ever oppose.

  24. Ben Gray

    I found the voting last night to be surreal, frankly. I felt like I was having an out of body experience. Might have been all the money at stake.

    I kind of felt my heart sink into my stomach when my Mum texted me after Denmark and said “that’s the winner.” I figured there’s no point dashing for some in-play, I’m covered with a German top 10, Natalie smashed it.

    Oh. Oh dear.

    So, what I will definitely take away from this year is to mainly stick by my theories that I’ve written above, since four of the top five were countries I had described as having some extent of radio friendliness. (Ukraine… just baffles me. How the hell did that come 3rd?) but no matter how much I narrow down what clearly appear to be the best, strongest packages of song, staging, vocal and to some extent country’s voting power. I have to pay more attention to first instincts and bear in mind that the voting, even with the tweaked 50/50 system, is still going to appear disproportionately friendly.

    Next year I might as well just jump right on an Azerbaijani top 10 so long as they pick something even half-decent. Until then, I’ll be licking my £560 wounds.

    • Chiggs

      Know how you feel Ben as I also lost (a not too dissimilar amount), taking positions opposing Ukraine and Italy and backing Georgia and Germany (and to a lesser extent Iceland).

      I was fortunate in a way that I hedged off my top 10 positions on Ireland and Germany. But failed to hedge out Germany for top central by buying Hungary; that was definitely a mistake on my part. I think I was reluctant to change that position because I wanted exposure.

      But I do agree there were some confusing results. I will be analysing them and looking to learn for next time!

  25. I never believed in Cascada. It had the ‘Kate Ryan-factor’ written all over it. Sorry. And then her voice. Come on, this is EUROVISION, not the auditions of The Voice.

    My colleague from ESF Magazine saw the whole thing from home. He didn’t placed a bet, but he did use his common sense when he watched it from the TV. This is his TOP 10-prediction from Friday no less http://www.esfmagazine.nl/?p=14892 :

    01) Denmark
    02) Greece
    03) Azerbaijan
    04) Russia
    05) Ukraine
    06) Norway
    07) Italy
    08) Moldova
    09) Netherlands
    10) Hungary

    I think in order to place a near-perfect bet it’s also important to have at least one neutral/objective person who’s watching from his sofa at home.

    And also….Eurovision 2013 proves that one can’t be too business-like. A certain musical charm, a certain honest emotion needs to be felt as well. Because in the end music is all about taste :-).

  26. Rob

    Italian televote released:

    http://escxtra.com/2013/05/full-televote-results-announced/

    Plus some info (I think) regarding Spanish voting – can anyone interpret the results shown here?

    http://www.eurovision-spain.com/iphp/noticia.php?numero=8740

  27. Rob

    EBU official response to corruption rumours:

    http://www.eurovision.tv/page/news?id=87553&_t=eurovision_organisers_respond_to_media_reports_on_voting

    Good Spectator article: http://www.spectator.co.uk/features/8910331/my-vision-for-eurovision/

    Swedish jury vote:

    SWEDEN JURY VOTING (FINAL)
    12 points to Norway
    10 points to The Netherlands
    08 points to Moldova
    07 points to Belgium
    06 points to Italy
    05 points to Denmark
    04 points to Russia
    03 points to United Kingdom
    02 points to Estonia
    01 point to France

    SWEDEN JURY VOTING (SEMIFINAL 1)
    12 points to Denmark
    10 points to Russia
    08 points to Moldova
    07 points to Belgium
    06 points to The Netherlands
    05 points to Montenegro
    04 points to Austria
    03 points to Estonia
    02 points to Ukraine
    01 point to Ireland

  28. I’ve run those Spanish results through the translator and sent them in an email. Strangely, there are results for both semi-finals, yet the Spanish public and jurors would have only been active during the second semi.

  29. neomichael

    Can anybody share his thoughts about the voting sequence that EBU decided for the final. As is stated “An algorithm has been created to try and make the voting as exciting as possible”, It would be nice if we could figure out how the algorithm is working for next eurovision contests.
    From my point of view i can see Italy and Azerbaijan gaining significantly more points at the 2nd half of the voting procedure. But what could be the logic behind this? Should’t the EBU give Denmark more points at the end of the voting procedure in order to keep the excitement? Or would this be too obvious for betting fans to predict?
    In any case denmark was announced winner long before the final country votes. Did something went wrong? Were they expecting Azerbaijan’s song to gather more televoting points in order to compete with the denmark’s song but it didn’t? And what about italy?
    Share your ideas!

    • Rob

      Hi neo,
      I think it was set up this year to try & keep things close for as long as possible, rather than have Denmark pull away into a comfortable lead early on.

      There was a point in-running when Denmark drifted out to something like 2.7 so it did create uncertainty. Keith Mills from AKOE, who has been following the ESC much longer than me also posted on Facebook highlighting there were a cluster of countries in the final third that looked highly likely to give Denmark big pts.

      If you believed in this, there was a window there to back Denmark at a much better price than it had been during the previous week or so.

      • neomichael

        Rob,

        Counting the actual votes, Denmark did indeed gathered more points in the final 3rd of the voting procedure.
        Denmark: 90 (1/3)+ 85(2/3)+ 106(3/3) = 281
        However the same goes for other countries too.
        Azerbaijan: 80 + 65 + 89 = 234
        Italy: 31 + 27 + 68 = 126
        Norway: 57 + 67 + 67 = 191
        Netherlands:33 + 38 + 43 = 114
        ..Which if you translate it to % difference , major increment in points have Azerbaijan and Italy and then follows Denmark.
        What i’m trying to say is that maybe they were expecting Azerbaijan (due to semi-final winner and better placed in final) to outreach Denmark or at least be in closer competition with it. Otherwise they could have simply given less points to Denmark at the 1st and 2nd third simply by using a different voting sequence, and keep things closer for even longer.
        In the bottom line, it seems that according to the voting sequence it is possible to extract valuable information as regards the top 4/10 if not for the winner.

        Thank you Rob and everyone else!
        See you in next ESC!

        Michael from Greece

  30. Rob

    ESC 2013 split results revealed:

    http://www.eurovision.tv/page/news?id=split_results_of_eurovision_2013_revealed

    Will try & do an analysis of this in coming weeks. Just coming to terms with Sweden being 3rd on the jury vote in the final, not to mention Azerbaijan 2nd, Moldova 5th & Ukraine 6th.

    And Malta wins the jury vote in semi 2, Azerbaijan 2nd. While Ukraine was 4th on the jury vote in semi 1 & 3rd in the televote. One word springs to mind here: flabbergasted.

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