The former commissioner of Britain's largest police force has emerged as the new favourite to take over the role of Garda Commissioner.

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe stepped down as commissioner of the Metropolitan police in London earlier this year after a tumultuous period in charge.

Bookmakers PaddyPower said this morning Mr Hogan-Hawe stood at 25/1 in betting.

However those odds were dramatically slashed to 2/1 this evening meaning that the former UK police chief has leapfrogged acting Commissioner Dónall Ó Cualáin as the favourite to take the top spot.

Commissioner Ó Cualáin has since confirmed that he will not be applying for the role.

A spokesman for the bookmaker, said: "We’ve had a bit of a rush on Mr Hogan-Howe today. He started at 25/1 today and has gone into 2/1.

"This isn’t the Grand National so it doesn’t take massive money to move it but the amount of bets that came in such a short period forced us to chop in into favourite.

"He’s been the only show in town today for punters and we’re still taking money on him at 2/1."

A photograph showing a betting slip with Mr Hogan-Hawe's name was shared amongst a number of Whatsapp groups today.

Asked if this may have affected the betting the spokesman said: "That might explain it, it’s not a huge market so a couple of dozen bets would definitely lead to a big shift. These types of rushes are either based on fact or rumour but from a risk point of view we have to treat them as if they carry some weight."

Mr Hogan-Howe became London Met commissioner on September 12, 2011, after the force had been hit by the worst riots in modern English history. Crime fell by 18pc during most of his time in office.

His predecessor, Sir Paul Stephenson, was forced from the job as a result of the phone-hacking scandal, and before him, Sir Ian Blair quit after he was told he had lost former mayor Boris Johnson’s confidence.

During his tenure Mr Hogan-Howe had what has been described as a strained relationship with London mayor Sadiq Khan.