Rio de Janeiro hosts the 2016 Summer Olympic Games with the tennis competition getting underway this Saturday. Find out who are the main contenders and the highest value players to win the gold medal.
Competing in the Olympic Games is considered by many athletes as the highest point of their career however, the same cannot be said about tennis players – especially this year with the ITF confirming that this year's event won't count for the ATP and WTA ranking, which lead to several withdrawals from the best players in the world.
Looking to the 30 best-ranked players on the ATP World Tour, only 14 of those will compete in this event, with Stan Wawrinka being the last one to announce his withdrawal due to a back injury.
Despite all these retirements, a top-class tournament is still expected with the world no.1 – Novak Djokovic – and the previous two champions – Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray – fighting for the gold medal.
Djokovic is the undeniable favorite to win this event with the Serbian priced at -131 at Pinnacle to lift the trophy yet, things won't be easy for Novak with the world no.1 starting his campaign against Juan Martin Del Potro in a reedition of the 2012 Bronze Medal match, where Del Potro emerged victorious by 7 – 5 6 – 4.
Despite this tough first round, Djokovic has a very good draw to make it into the final, with Nadal as the only big name on his half of the draw, however, the last month's haven't been easy for the Spaniard with a wrist injury and as the Spaniard said, he shouldn't present himself at 100% on this event. With this in mind, we believe that Djokovic should cruise into the final where he might face the 2012 champion, Murray.
Andy is the highest ranked player in the bottom half of the draw and he shouldn't experience any kind of problems until the semifinals, where he might face Kei Nishikori. The two have featured some very interesting battles in the past yet, the edge is clearly on Murray's side with a 6 – 1 lead on the h2h.
As it happened already four times this year, Djokovic and Murray should face each other in a final, with Djokovic winning three of those. Despite Novak's edge, the value is clearly on Andy's side and for that reason, our suggestion is for you to add Murray to your betting picks to win the gold medal at +250 at Bet365.
Looking now to the women's competition, 75.0% of the players ranked in the top 20 will compete in this event, with the world no.3 – Simona Halep – as the highest ranked player to miss this tournament.
The defending champion and world no.1, Serena Williams, is once again the main favorite for the gold medal at +131 on Pinnacle. Looking now to Serena's draw on this event, the American shouldn't experience many problems until the semifinals where she might face Garbine Muguruza, who is priced at +650 on Bet365 to win the title.
Despite Serena's 3 – 2 lead on h2h, it was Muguruza who won their prior encounter a few months ago in Roland Garros' final by 7 – 5 6 – 4. The conditions in Rio are extremely hot and humid, which clearly benefits Garbine and for that reason, there is clear value on her betting odds for this event.
After reaching the final in Montreal, this might be a good opportunity for Madison Keys to extend her good momentum, with the American as one of the main favorites to reach the final in the bottom half of the draw. Keys is currently priced at +250 on bet365 to win the 3rd quarter, a very interesting price that clearly deserves a bet.