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2 Mar, 2008 22:30

Election – time to gamble!

With the winner of Russia’s presidential election barely in doubt, bookmakers in Ukraine are taking spread bets on what proportion of the vote each candidate will take.

If you think guessing who the next man in the Kremlin will be is too easy, try working out how close each candidate will get.

Gamblers can try their luck with spread betting, attempting to gauge the percentage of the vote that will go to each Russian presidential hopeful.

Sasha, one of the gamblers, says you have to know politics very well to make this kind of prediction.

“You see the bookmakers give Medvedev 72.5% of the vote. So if you think he could get more and he does, then you’ll win almost $US 100 on top of your $US 60 bet. If he gets fewer votes and you said he would, then you'll get nearly $US 200,” he said.

According to Ukraine's bookmakers, Communist party leader Gennady Zyuganov is likely to garner 13.5% of the vote, while Vladimir Zhirinovsky stands with 9.5%.

The result of Russia's fourth presidential candidate, Andrey Bogdanov, is apparently not even worth gambling on, since he’s missing from the prediction table.

The ‘None of the Above’ option, on the other hand, is proving the most popular with the punters.

Pity the Ukrainian bookmakers forgot that Russia has removed this choice from its ballot papers.