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FINAL HAND STORY

Oddities

It’s a mixed bag for Novelty Bets this month as Gambling’s Duncan Wilkie runs the rule over the return of every parent’s worst nightmare, a big night for the Irish and night-watch on Merseyside

EH-OH!

When the Teletubbies first hit television screens a few years ago, parents and children the country over were driven absolutely crazy – albeit for different reasons – by the prospect of watching four grown adults prance around in neon foam costumes.

According to recent speculation, things will be no different this year as everyone’s favourite fluorescent foursome prepares to make their much-anticipated return to prime time children’s television with a brand new series of programmes in autumn.

Naturally, the bright sparks over at Paddy Power have already opened several books relating to the resurrection of Tinky Winky, Dipsy, Laa-Laa and Po and punters can currently get 2/1 on them having a number one single before the end of the year.

In a similar vein, you can bet that the kid’s TV phenomenon will capture the Christmas number one spot without the X-Factor winner at 6/1 or back them to beat the popular reality show’s latest artist to the top of the chart at a far juicier 12/1.

Additional bets are also available on the Teletubbies being the best selling children’s Christmas toy at 3/1, with Po (6/4), Laa-Laa (9/4), Tinky Winky (3/1) and Dipsy (4/1) all individually priced to be the object of your offspring’s desires come December.

IRISH ENDEAVOUR

Make no mistake about it, the Irish love any gala occasion that honours the best their country has to offer, but this year’s Greatest Irish Sportsperson Ever awards ceremony on RTE promises to blow all over celebrations out of the water.

Rest assured that the Guinness will be flowing come December when the Irish broadcasters will unveil the winner of the prestigious accolade – as voted for by the Irish public – and it should come as no surprise that Paddy Power are already taking bets on who will emerge triumphant from the nationwide poll.

Currently topping the list is former Northern Irish soccer legend George Best, whose legendary career and flamboyant lifestyle have seen him installed as the 11/4 favourite. Behind him is veteran golf pro Padraig Harrington at 7/2 and another posthumous nomination in the form of Hurling legend Christy Ring at 7/1.

Midfield general turned soccer coach Roy Keane, athlete Sonia O’Sullivan and former racehorse trainer Vincent O’Brien all follow at 8/1 before sharper drops to Paul McGrath (16/1), Barry McGuigan (33/1) and Alex Higgins (a surprisingly long 66/1). Sadly, Blackburn Rovers’ Keith Andrews did not make the list due to being utterly rubbish.

BREAK-IN EVEN

It probably isn’t the best idea to cash in on a national stereotype by opening a book on which Liverpool FC player will be the next to be burgled – but that certainly didn’t stop one bookmaker from briefly dabbling with it last month.

The bookmaker controversially published a list of odds on which Liverpool player’s house will be the next to fall victim to robbers – much to the chagrin of official supporters’ groups – and duly installed defender Jamie Carragher as 12/1 favourite, if such a term can apply.

Similar prices could be found on girlish striker Fernando Torres and the considerably tougher midfield duo of Lucas Leiva and Steven Gerrard, but why anyone would have wanted to mess with professional Sloth from the Goonies look-a-like Dirk Kuyt (14/1) is completely beyond us.

The same odds of 14/1 could also be found on new boy Alberto Aquilani, who faced the undesirable prospect of being stripped of his possessions before he’d even kicked a ball for his new employers. Here’s hoping that the short-lived book – which has now been taken down from the site – didn’t give quick-fingered Everton fans any ideas.

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