We're an impatient bunch. The birth of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's first baby is just a few weeks away, but we still can't stop ourselves from speculating about what the gender and name of the royal baby will be.
And it seems some people have been speculating hard, as they're all-but certain they know all the crucial details about Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis' unborn baby cousin. In fact, according to betting intelligence site bookmakers.tv, all bookies have now suspended all gambling on the baby's gender following an influx of bets that Meghan and Harry will be welcoming a baby girl in April.
"Ever since yesterday morning, the stream of bets led bookies to believe that perhaps the punters, or an inside source, knows something more than the industry," said a spokesperson.
Meghan and Harry have spoken previously about keeping the sex of their child a secret. The Sunday Times' royal correspondent, Roya Nikkhah overheard Meghan tell crowds on a visit to Birkenhead in January that "she and Harry have chosen not to find out if it’s a girl or boy so they can keep it a 'surprise'".
But contrary to that, other reports suggest the Duke and Duchess of Sussex do know their unborn baby's gender - they're just keeping the information between themselves. Meghan's friend Gayle King, who attended the royal mum-to-be's baby shower in New York last month, previously revealed that Meghan didn't open any of her gifts "because she wants to do that when she and Harry are back together."
But according to sources speaking to Us Weekly, there was a more important reason she opted not to unwrap her friends' presents for the baby. "The reason they didn’t open gifts at the shower wasn’t because Meghan wanted to open the gifts with Harry, but because they would have revealed the baby’s gender," said an insider.
Interesting. So if Meghan and Harry do know the gender of the royal baby, it figures that someone else may have got their hands on the information too, hence the recent flurry of bets. This is all just theoretical, of course. God, I have way too much time on my hands.
You might also be interested to know that it's not just the sex of the royal baby people are convinced they've predicted - they're also having a go at guessing the name. Currently, the top female name is an unsurprising one: Diana. The odds for a tribute of this kind of Harry's late mother come in at 5/1, making it the most bet upon name.
Other contenders for girls' names include, according to Paddy Power:
- Grace - 14/1
- Alice - 14/1
- Victoria - 14/1
- Elizabeth - 18/1
- Alexandra - 18/1
- Frances - 18/1
Bets are still being made for boys' names, too, with the favourites being:
- Arthur - 8/1
- James - 14/1
- Edward - 14/1
- Alexander - 18/1
Betting on the royal baby is big business, it seems, with thousands keen to get in on the action and a chance to win some money. According to bookmakers.tv, so far, a record £7m has been spent on bets on Meghan’s due date, the baby’s gender, whether it will receive a royal title, and its name. You think that sounds a lot? The figure is expected to rise to £12m by the time the baby's name is announced.
Imagine being this poor unsuspecting baby, just cooking away nicely inside Meghan Markle's uterus, not realising any of this is waiting for it on the outside...
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