Samira Ahmed has emerged as the favourite to take over from John Humphrys as Mastermind host.
The journalist and broadcaster could be set to become the first woman to present the BBC show in its 50 year history.
Samira is now leading the way to replace John in the chair after the presenter announced his departure last week.
The 52-year-old is known for presenting Front Row on Radio 4 and her BBC documentary on the history of Iran. She previously worked for Channel 4 News before joining the BBC.
Samira also won an equal pay dispute against the BBC in 2020 at an employment tribunal. Samira claimed she had been underpaid by £700,000 for presenting Newswatch on the BBC News Channel compared with Jeremy Vine’s earnings for Points Of View on BBC One.
According to bookmaker Ladbrokes, Samira is currently 2/1 to be named the next host.
Jessica O’Reilly of Ladbrokes said: ‘It’s about time a female took over the Mastermind reins, and all fingers are pointing towards Samira Ahmed becoming the next host following the surprise departure of John Humphreys.’
Elsewhere, Pointless co-host Richard Osman is 6/1 to become the next presenter. Naga Munchetty is 8/1, Jane Garvey is 10/1, Jeremy Paxman is 12/1 and both Sandi Toksvig and Victoria Coren-Mitchell are 14/1.
Mastermind has been presented by the departing host John for 18 years. His final show will air next month.
The quiz show first aired in 1972, with Magnus Magnusson in the chair.
Last year, an employment tribunal unanimously ruled that journalist Samira should have been paid the same fellow broadcaster Jeremy Vine. The presenter asked why she was paid £495 per episode of Newswatch while her male counterpart earned £3,000 for each instalment of Points of View.
In a statement issued through the National Union of Journalists (NUJ), Ahmed said at the time: ‘No woman wants to have to take action against their own employer. I love working for the BBC. I’m glad it’s been resolved.
‘I’m now looking forward to continuing to do my job, to report on stories and not being one.’
Mastermind airs on BBC Two
Credit: Original article published here.