a dead cert

a dead cert

slang Someone who is almost certain to do a certain thing or to succeed in a particular area. Sally is the most qualified candidate by far, so she's a dead cert for the promotion.
See also: cert, dead

a dead ˈcert

(informal) a person or thing that is certain to win, succeed, etc: ‘Would you ever bet money on a horse?’ ‘No, not unless it was a dead cert.’
Dead here means complete or total. Cert is a short form of certainty.
See also: cert, dead
References in periodicals archive ?
He said: "You can always have surprises, that said I think Colin Firth is as close as you can get to a dead cert for the Oscars.
We can't guarantee whether you'll end up with a dead cert or a rank outsider, but you're sure to have great fun playing.
But even if your pick is more of a dead loss than a dead cert - don't despair.