Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 1 October 2014

The Punter: London 2012 set to be Team GB’s most successful Olympics ever

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 24: Members of Team GB arrive in the Olympic Village on July 24, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

London, the first city to host the modern Olympics for a third time, will deliver plenty of great golden moments before the curtain comes down on sport's greatest stage on August 12.

How many of those will be British celebrations — there should at least be a plethora of silver and bronze — is debatable.

But it could well be a record haul of gold on the home front and odds of 3/1 for between 19 and 21 has plenty of appeal.

Britain landed 19 golden gongs in Beijing, so there's every hope of beating that total.

At least six are expected in cycling while rowing, athletics, swimming, sailing, boxing, equestrianism, triathlon and modern pentathlon should provide further winners.

Jessica Ennis is odds-on to take the heptathlon as is Alistair Brownlee in the triathlon, making them the hottest British prospects.

Brownlee (4/6) should deliver but Ennis has had her problems over the last year, losing her world title to Russia's Tatyana Chernova, making the latter a much better bet at a tasty 5/2.

The women's triathlon sees Helen Jenkins at the head of the market (6/4) with it being 6/1 bar the rest, so her prospects look very bright.

On the track, Mo Farah is fancied for the 10,000m and 5,000m double, quoted at 2/1 and 6/4 respectively.

However, one gold would do and it's more likely to come in the 5,000m in which he's the current world champion.

Paddy Power have put up a tempting double — 5/2 for Usain Bolt to burst to glory in the 100 and 200 metres which he did in Beijing. He'll take a world of beating and that price should be taken, especially as he's 4/7 for the 200 and 8/11 for the other.

All firms have the USA very strong odds-on to win most medals and most gold but China at 5/2 are worth backing in the overall total medal category.

In the football, Great Britain have no chance. They are a maximum lay bet at 12/1.

The winners will be Brazil who at 6/4 are bankers. Uruguay (7/1) can reach the final.

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