Sweden has been tipped as the hot favourite to win the Eurovision Song Contest, in a Europe-wide BBC vote.

Singer Charlotte Perrelli impressed a panel of Eurovision fans with her song Hero, over entries from the Ukraine, Switzerland and host nation Serbia, according to BBC Online.

The UK’s Andy Abraham polled only enough votes to finish in 33rd place in a field of 43 songs.

One Eurovision fan from each country chose their Top 10 songs ahead of Tuesday night’s first semi-final in Belgrade.

Their choices were awarded Eurovision-style points, with one point for 10th place, up to a maximum of 12 points for their favourite songs.

The points were combined to create the final standings, from 1st to 43rd place. Montenegro came last with just two points.

Perrelli – who won Eurovision in 1999 as Charlotte Nilsson – finished 62 points clear of Ukraine’s Ani Lorak, after being awarded maximum points by several fans from across Europe.

In successful, the Swedish star would secure Sweden’s fifth victory in the contest, and become the first woman to win two contests.

Ireland’s Johnny Logan is the only singer to have won twice in the competition’s 53-year history, in 1980 and 1987.

The Eurovision Song Contest semi-finals take place on May 20 and 22 and will both be shown at 8pm on BBC Three.

The grand final can be seen on May 24 at 8pm on BBC One.

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