THE UK may have scored “nul points” at Eurovision this year but it turns out it was Ireland who actually finished last in this year’s competition.
James Newman suffered the ignominy of receiving a zero from both the judges and the voting public at home, despite a spirited performance of his up-tempo post-lockdown anthem Embers.
But while the UK entrant was the big loser on the night, it has since emerged that Ireland arguably fared even worse at this year’s Eurovision event in Rotterdam.
The Republic’s 2021 entry Lesley Roy failed to progress past the semi-finals after her track, Maps, failed to inspire much in the way of support.
While that result was disappointing enough for Ireland, who have won Eurovision more than any other nation in the competition’s history, it turns out the situation was even worse than first feared.
New figures have revealed that Roy’s song did, in fact, finish dead last in the semi-final, scoring a grand total of just 20 points to finish 16th out of the 16 countries taking part.
To put that score into some context, Malta bagged a whopping 325 points during the semi, with Ireland finishing below the likes of Northern Macedonia.
And while other nations scored lower in the second semi-final, more countries were competing in that leg, meaning there was more competition for points.
All of which could provide some pause for reflection among those who found the UK’s zero points tally a source of some amusement over the weekend.
It is also likely to lead to a lot of soul searching with Ireland left scratching their heads to find a reason why they have now gone 25 years without a Eurovision win.
Some have pointed to the decision to enter Dustin the Turkey, a rubber puppet comedy character known to few people outside of Ireland, in 2008.
Dustin’s efforts are often cited as a watermark moment for Ireland’s involvement in Eurovision, with many concerned that it demonstrated a lack of respect for the competition.
Roy’s performance has also drawn criticism from the overly elaborate stage setup to the moment where she attempted to sing while walking on a treadmill.
Thankfully a solution may be on the horizon after Sinead O’Connor threw her hat into the ring to appear as Ireland’s entry in next year’s Eurovison.