By Andrew Bushe
DUBLIN — A throw-in by the queen at the 1999 All-Ireland football final in Croke Park is one of the more wacky New Year bets on offer at odds of 1,000:1 by the Paddy Power bookmakers.
Among the top odds are 10,000:1 for prohibition to be introduced during the year and the bookies consider it such a sure bet that they are offering no odds at all on the possibility of a British MP being involved in a sex scandal.
Two Charlies both figure in the betting. A marriage of Prince Charles to Camilla is at 66:1 and a return from retirement of Charlie Haughey to head a new tax amnesty is offered at 1,000:1.
The same long odds are available for Ireland leaving the EU and no English winners at the Cheltenham racing festival in March.
Also, in sport, Catherina McKiernan to win gold at the Olympics is 3:1 and 10:1 is offered on an Irish international soccer team taking the field without an Irish-born player during the year.
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In politics, a PD-Fianna Fail merger is a 20:1 bet and a general election is at 5:1.
A soccer international in Croke Park is on offer at 25:1 and legalization of marijuana is 500:1.
Showbusiness fans can get 200:1 on a Eurovision double win for Ireland in 1999 and 2000 and 5:1 for every single from the group B*witched to reach No. 1 in the UK.
The novelty bets also include a 1,000:1 wager on the chance that the National Irish Bank board of directors will be put in charge of the National Debt or 50:1 that pub closing times will be abolished.