Will Dua Lipa steal thunder from Ed Sheeran at Brit Awards?

Ed Sheeran (left) is on the shortlist for British Album of the Year, along with Dua Lipa (right), grime artist Stormzy, singer Rag'n'Bone Man and hip-hop artist J Hus.
Ed Sheeran (left) is on the shortlist for British Album of the Year, along with Dua Lipa (right), grime artist Stormzy, singer Rag'n'Bone Man and hip-hop artist J Hus.PHOTO: AFP; AFP/GETTY IMAGES

LONDON (AFP) - Folk-pop hit machine Ed Sheeran will go head-to-head with rising R'n'B star Dua Lipa at the Brit Awards in London on Wednesday.

The ceremony at O2 Arena is expected to have a political edge, with many stars due to wear small white roses to highlight sexual harassment and show solidarity with its victims.

Sheeran is on the shortlist for British Album of the Year, along with Dua Lipa, grime artist Stormzy, singer Rag'n'Bone Man and hip-hop artist J Hus.

In the British Male Solo Artist category, Sheeran is up against Stormzy and Rag'n'Bone Man as well as former Oasis frontman Liam Gallagher and hip-hop singer Loyle Carner.

He is also running against Dua Lipa for the best video award.

Singer-guitarist Sheeran, 27, has already been honoured in 2018, winning Grammys for Best Pop Vocal Album ahead of Lady Gaga and Coldplay, and Best Pop Solo Performance for the single Shape Of You.

Dua Lipa, 22, is the latest artist to break through on YouTube, and her single New Rules has surpassed one billion views on the video-sharing platform.

She is nominated in five categories, including British Female Solo Artist, along with Paloma Faith, who won the award in 2015, Kate Tempest, Jessie Ware and Laura Marling.

The Brit Awards have recognised the cream of British pop music since they were first held in 1977.