Bookies decide Doctor Who’s Matt Smith will be replaced by…

Rupert Grint, no, Russell Tovey, I mean Rory Kinnear, David Harewood, Chiwetel Ejiofor... it's definitely Benedict Cumberbatch...

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Yep, that’s right, the bookies seem as clueless as the rest of us as to who will be stepping into the TARDIS at the end of the year, but that hasn’t stopped them offering prices on almost everyone ever to have appeared in front of a television camera as the next Time Lord.

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Harry Potter’s Rupert Grint is one of the favourites being put forward (12/1 – best price) with Women In Love’s Rory Kinnear (12/1) also topping some of the more well-known bookmaker’s lists, but there’s far from a consensus.

Other names emerging across the market include BAFTA nominated Chiwetel Ejiofor (12/1) and Homeland’s David Harewood (12/1) who are both being tipped for the first black Doctor. BBC cult favourites including Merlin star Colin Morgan (16/1) and of course Sherlock’s Benedict Cumberbatch (25/1) and Martin Freeman (25/1) are also cropping up left, right and centre.

The bookies are happy to consider a female Doctor, offering 20/1 on Dame Helen Mirren and Fresh Meat star Zawe Ashton – whilst giving 33/1 on Call the Midwife and comedy favourite Miranda Hart.

And a book just wouldn’t be the same without some silly longshots, would it?

Therefore, if you really want to waste some money why not have a flutter on David Beckham to enter the TARDIS – or Tom Cruise, John Terry or Simon Cowell, all 250/1.  Good luck with those.

So what have we learned? Well, it’s an open race alright – and bookies will take a bet on almost anything!  Let the mad speculation and wildly inconsistent odds continue…

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For some semi-serious suggestions on who should replace Matt Smith, try Jack Seale’s piece here