The Olympics are back. For the sports nut, it means a whole month of having an excuse to veg out on the sofa watching world-class athletes take their performances to the limits of human endurance. For the sports betting enthusiast, it means a whole host of sports you don't usually get to watch, that you have the chance to win money by betting on.
Much like in poker, it is unwise to place a sports bet without all of the information at your disposal. In this article, the experts at BookieSmash examine the best ways to win at some of the popular sports during the Games.
Track & Field
The most-followed part of every Olympics, and the part most people remember afterwards, is the track and field competitions. It's the closest we get to the Ancient Olympic Games that took place in Greece, and this time the races and events are filled with value.
Of course most people expect Usain Bolt to win the Men's 100m, and it's probably not controversial to say that most people want him to beat Justin Gatlin to the gold medal, but have you considered other runners in the iconic race? Unibet, at the time of writing, has Bolt's team-mate and almost-match Yohan Blake at 13/1 to win the sprint. It's mission difficult, but not Mission Impossible for Blake, and that's why a small deposit on those odds makes sense.
Over on the Men's Long Jump, London 2012 home hero Greg Rutherford has the bookies marking him as favorite to make it two Olympic titles in the sandbox, and Betfred has Rutherford at 9/4 to go further than anyone else. Greg's worth your money at those odds, but you'd be advised to go each ways on him and Jeff Henderson, who is 7/2 with Betfair to take gold.
Last time out, in London, British cycling was expected to take everyone else to the cleaners. It happened - kind of - but the disappointment for Mark Cavendish was raw as his illustrious sprint team was crushed by Alexander Vinoukourov, who took gold for Kazakhstan.
This time around, Britain has dominated three Tours de France in the years between Olympics, and Chris Froome, the three-time yellow jersey-holder, is among the favorites for Olympic gold. Froome won't win without a tough challenge, though. Betfair have Froome at 16/1 to win, and overall favorite Alejandro Valverde at 9/2 on a course that is likely to suit him.
2012 hero Sir Bradley Wiggins is in a squad for the Men's Team Pursuit that is favorite, but only just, and is up against Australia, which has a fine squad and is 6/4 to beat the Brits with Betfair. In the Women's Road Race, there's little to choose between Anna van der Breggen at 4/1 with Ladbrokes, and Lizzie Armitstead at 5/1 with 10Bet, and it'll be a chase that will probably go to the wire.
The Olympics isn't counted as a Grand Slam tournament and isn't usually regarded as highly by its competitors as the ATP Tour matches that earn pros their bread and butter. Nonetheless, tennis is always one of the most popular sports among viewers and sports bettors, and Men's stars like Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray will be in action, along with main favorite Serena Williams in the Women's tournament.
Garbine Muguruza has big value against Williams and the others, given that she has emerged as the great Serena's biggest challenger and is 5/1 with BetVictor to win gold. On the Men's side, it's a real shame Milos Raonic will not be taking part after his Wimbledon final appearance - ditto the greatest of all time, Roger Federer - but Kei Nishikori has odds to win the Singles that stand out, at 25/1 with Paddy Power.
BookieSmash is the place to come during the Rio 2016 Olympics for the best bets and tips to make sure you're in a position to profit! Check out the Complete Betting Guide to the 2016 Olympics.