Thursday 18 January 2018

Fr Dougal's a better bet than Hummes

Never mind the gee-gees, the papal race is already proving to be paradise for punters.

Bookmaker Paddy Power says more than €300,000 has already been placed on the noses of various papabili (top papal picks).

At odds as low as 2-1, Cardinal Angelo Scola, the Archbishop of Milan, is the favourite, closely followed by Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana at 5-2.

This really is the Grand National of religious races, and in Rome this week many of the clerics were studying the form card in bemusement, perhaps recalling the phrase repeated by Cardinal Javier Barragan of Mexico: "He who enters the conclave as a possible pope comes out a cardinal."

However, a bit of Christian pity is required for one unfancied runner. Nine more bets have been placed on 10,000-1 underdog Fr Dougal McGuire, from 'Father Ted', than on Brazilian no-hoper Cardinal Claudio Hummes.

Irish Independent

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