Although this is Imri Ziv’s first time as lead artist for Eurovision, he has also represented Israel in 2015 and 2016 as backing singer for Nadav Guedj and Hovi Star. It really makes you wonder why they have kept such a gem hidden in the background for so long when he is fully capable of taking centre stage and winning over Eurovision audiences world wide.
The curse of 43 at Eurovision strikes again. In recent times when there has been a field of 43 entrants, someone has fallen victim to a withdrawal, disqualification or a ban. In 2009 Georgia’s ‘We Don’t Wanna Put In’ was forced to withdraw for political content, Armenia announced they would not compete in 2012 due to ongoing disputes over the Nagorno-Karabakh region with host nation Azerbaijan, Romania’s Anton Ovidiu was forced to withdraw last year due to unpaid licencing fees by the national broadcaster and now Russia have been forced to withdraw from the Contest following the ban of their artist Yulia Samoilova, as a result of her performing in the disputed region of the Crimea.