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2004 Olympics: Take Brits to exceed expectations.

Byline: STEVEN DOWNES

THE British team stunned themselves in Sydney four years ago with a magnifcent 11 gold medals and there appears to be optimism that they can at least get close to that total again in Athens

The British haul also surprised the spread firms, who after watching dismal performances in the Atlanta and Barcelona games, had expected no more than a handful of golds.

British Olympics chiefs have been 'managing expectations' in the run-up to Athens ever since, talking down the team's prospects.

From the 11 golds, ten silver and seven bronze of four years ago, the BOA is tipping between six and nine golds in Athens, with just 25 medals in total.

And the BOA are usually known for their optimism, which makes Cantor's 8-9 spread on British gold medals look like a reasonable sell.

However, IG's 305-325 quote on the overall British medals tally - based on a scoring system of 25 for gold, ten for silver and five for bronze - seems to offer little chance of much profit for sellers.

Great Britain have high hopes for gold in cycling, rowing, sailing and swimming, while the outstanding Paul Raadcliffe is our best chance in the athletics. A small buy is advised.

Recommendation

Buy GB overall performance

1pt at 325 (IG)

Olympics - IG: Great Britain medal performances (25pts gold, 10pts silver, 5pts bronze): 305-325 total GB performance, 34-38 athletics, 35-398 rowing, 48-52 swimming, 17-20 equestrian, 62-66 cycling.

Cantor: 36-40 GB athletics performance (25 gold, 10 silver, 5 bronze), 8-9 total GB golds, 45-55 Phelps/Thorpe swimming match bet (25 gold, 10 silver, 5 bronze). Individual medal performances (25:10:5): 18-19.5 B Ainslie (Finn class sailing), 17.5-19 P Radcliffe (women's marathon), 10-11.5 C Hoy (1km track cycling), 8.5-10 men's coxless fours, 4.5-6 N Cooke (road race), 3-5 four relay teams (athletics), 3-4.5 K Holmes (women's 1,500m), 3-4.5 C Rawlinson (400m hurdles), 2-3.5 K Sotherton (heptathlon), 1-2.5 S Backley (men's javelin), 1-2.5 P Idowu (triple jump), 1-2.5 D Macey (decathlon).
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Aug 13, 2004
Words:343
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