Sun June 17, 2012 4:15pm
KARISE EDEN is the firm favourite to take out the grand finale of The Voice and be crowned the vocal talent of the nation.
Online bookmaker Sportingbet has the New South Wales Central Coast teen ahead of her rivals to win the title in the hotly-contested, two-part grand final which starts tonight.
The shy 19-year-old’s touching story struck a chord early with voters and fans of the show.
Eden is a ward of the state who grew up in more than 20 refuges. She found solace in music after being fostered by a family who owned a music store.
Her coach, Seal, was reduced to tears by her heartfelt rendition of the Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah during last Sunday's performance.
"I realised pretty early on with you that I'd been given a gift in you," Seal told her during the show.
"Part of being a great artist is battling our demons, all of us will testify to that, like you just did."
But Eden will be up against some stiff competition from Sarah De Bono, who is hot on her heels for the title.
De Bono, a social media favourite has four times as many Twitter followers and twice as many Facebook fans as the other contestants.
Her coach, Joel Madden also has more Twitter followers than any other mentor (644,000) and combined with his wife Nicole Richie, has an audience of almost 4 million.
Richie urged her followers to vote for her husband's protegé earlier in the week: "My girl @Sarah-DeBono is the #TEAMJOEL finalist. Vote for her anywhere in the world 1 x a day on your facebook page..."
Darren Percival, third favourite has been praised for his every performance which has been matched by his ARIA charts success - hitting number six for his version of Stevie Wonder's I Believe.