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Nic Ladds 27th Aug 2009 - 9:19

Strictly Come Dancing females get the once over

Strictly Come Dancing returns to our screens as of Friday 18 September and an intriguing looking betting market is already in full flow with retired boxing superstar Joe Calzaghe favourite at odds of 4/1.

As usual the field is peppered with a host of unknown "celebrities", no hopers, eye candy for both the male and female watchers and one or two who could be surprise packages.

The last female winner came two series' ago when Alesha Dixon wowed the judges with what was described as the best peformance ever seen on SCD to make it three wins for the girls over the five series which had them in the lead before Tom Chambers evened things up last year.

So if you haven't heard of half the field, fear not, below is a very brief overview of all the female runners and their current odds.

The Girls:

Ali Bastian, odds 12/1 - ex Hollyoaks eye candy that will please the male viewers and shouldn't be too unpopular with the female viewers given her soap star status. Fits the Jodie Kidd role of likeable if a bit awkward and gangly, should still be in with about 5 weeks to go.

Lynda Bellingham, odds 33/1 - found fame as Oxo mum and taking her top off in 'Confessions Of A Taxi Driver'. Hopefully this 61-year-old remains fully clothed here,and chances are she will be dreadful - no chance.

Natalie Cassidy, odds 16/1 - moon faced ex-Eastender who played cult joke figure Sonia Jackson. A boob job hasn't helped her career since she left Walford and will probably survive a few weeks from votes by the Eastenders loyalists, despite making John Sergeant look agile.

Martina Hingis, odds 10/1 - former tennis ace who will surely to be able to move on the dance floor. Not sure whether public will warm to her and may have the ability to see her through until the final stages but will probably lack the charisma needed to glean public support.

Jade Johnson, odds 6/1 - got the potential to be really rather good given her athletic back ground but is not particularly well known outside her field, and this could result in a lack of public votes meaning she may well not go as far as her talent should allow.

Zoe Lucker, odds 12/1 - the slutty one in Footballer's Wives who has gone on to scale the dizzy heights of bit parts on staples Coronation Street and Where The Heart Is. Has recently found spiritualism when meeting the Dalai Lama and is going to need help from above as chances are she'll be out after two weeks.

Laila Rouass, odds 10/1 - another ex-Footballer's Wives star (the slighty less slutty one), along with ex-Hollyoaks, ex-Family Affairs to go with appearances in pretty much every other soap so sure to be recognisable to the housewives. Certainly will look the part and if she can engage the audience could go far at a price.

Jo Wood, odds 25/1 - Ronnie Wood's ex wife who was recently dumped for a 20-year-old Russian so will have the sympathy vote already. If she can combine this with moves, could provide a shock and hang around until the final few weeks, chances.

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