The Olympics provide a gambler’s playground

Jul 25, 2012

The UK Prepares For The Olympic Games With One Week To Go

A general view of the London 2012 Olympic countdown clock as it shows 7 days to go, in Trafalgar Square on July 20, 2012 in London, England. The opening ceremony of the games will take place on July 27, 2012. Credit: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

For some, betting is like breathing. Devoted gamblers will wager anything like whether or not it will rain or a roll of the dice at a casino. But the biggest draw for people who favor chance is sporting events, and the upcoming summer Olympics provide a veritable feast for those looking to place bets.

Opportunities range from the absurd – like whether or not the torch bearer will trip as they make their way to the flame – to the marquee – like whether or not the Jamaican Usain Bolt will retain his title as the fastest man in history in the 100-meter dash. Online gambling on the Olympics is prohibited in the U.S., but it is big business elsewhere in the world… really big business. The online betting realm is a $9 billion industry in Britain alone.


Fears of match-fixing raises concerns for the International Olympic Committee, but is it possible to stop people from gambling on the biggest event in international sports? Should gambling be allowed on the Olympics?

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