Finals Action in Olympic Team Events

Published August 20, 2008 by OCR Editor

Finals Action in Olympic Team Events

Basketball, handball, volleyball all heading toward the closing stages.

It's finals galore in women's team events on day 12 (Thursday) of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

Basketball odds
The women take to the court Thursday in semi-final basketball action. Neither game is expected to be much of a contest. The USA is 1/100 at Ladbrokes to defeat Russia, 10/1, while in the other semi, Australia - despite injuries to key players Penny Taylor and Lauren Jackson - is an almost-as-solid 1/50 in the odds to defeat hosts China 8/1.

The men's semi-finals take place on Friday, with the USA the hot favorite to go all the way and win the gold medal after losing it at Athens. The USA is 1.11 (in decimal odds) at Betfair to win the tournament, against 6.2 for the "any other nation" option.

Handball odds
It's also ladies' day in the handball, with the notable absence of three-time defending champion Denmark from proceedings after they were knocked out in the preliminary rounds. The stage is now set for another country to take over the mantle of champion. Norway is 4/11 favorite to defeat 2004 silver medalist South Korea.   Russia is 3/10 to beat Hungary, 13/4.

2004 men's gold medalist Croatia leads a field of eight teams hoping to progress from Wednesday's quarter-finals to medal contention.

Volleyball odds
Arch-rivals the Cuba and the United States face each other in women's volleyball semi-finals Thursday.  While this will get much of the attention from television viewers, the two teams are actually third and fourth in the odds for the gold medal - Cuba 3/1 and the USA 13/2, respectively. Brazil (8/11 for the tournament) plays China (11/4) in the other semi-final.

Medal matches in women's football, softball and field hockey are also being held Thursday.

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