Once again Basketball steps into the stoplight as the World Cup delivers on promise to showcase some exciting plays and thrilling actions.
The 2014 edition of the FIBA (International Basketball Federation) World Cup has commenced on August 30th and will conclude on the 14th of September, with Spain being the host nation. This year’s event marks the competition being held for the 17th time in its illustrious history and has already seen some of the best action in recent times.
The event is spread out over six host cities (Madrid, Barcelona, Seville, Granada, Barakaldo and Las Palmas) and features 24 of the world’s best teams. Gambling news reports the final will be held in Madrid where the two best teams are going to face off and battle for the ultimate glory.
• FIBA held the first WC in Argentina, 1950
• The next tournament will be played in 2019
• USA likely to win the tournament
After being officially recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in 1930, FIBA was originally founded in Geneva, Switzerland two years later. A total of eight countries contributed to the founding of the association: Argentina, Czechoslovakia, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Portugal, Romania and Switzerland.
The 1936 Summer Olympics served as the first major competition where basketball made its debut, thanks to the efforts made by FIBA and all its initial founders. However, it wasn’t until a whole fourteen years later that the association managed to organize a first ever World Cup in basketball. Argentina held the first World Cup event in 1950.
For many years Yugoslavia dominated the competitions, as they managed to rack up a total of 10 medals throughout history. Their medals include; 5 Gold, 3 Silver and 2 Bronze. However, since the country dissolved in 1992, the team has lost the fearsome aspect it once had. In recent times, USA has become one of the most feared teams to enter the tournaments.
USA has won a total of four Gold medals in their history and are looking to build on their success, according to mobile betting firms. They have also notched up 3 Silver and 4 Bronze medals throughout their vast World Cup exploits.
Teams with potential
As with almost every other previous edition of the basketball World Cups, USA is still perhaps the most promising team in the competition this time around. Together with the host nation Spain, they boast some of the biggest talents in the sport. Should Spain beat France in the quarter-finals, then they would have to pass through Serbia in the Semis to face USA.
Considering their home advantage, Spain is the favorite to beat France in the play-offs with odds of 1.04 (0/1), while French remain outsiders with odds of 13.50 (25/2), according to Bet365 odds. USA faces Lithuania in the Semi-finals, which many online sportsbooks in Spain believe will be an easy game for the Americans given their talented team.
Lithuania have managed to surprise many at the tournament as they got all the way top the semis, by first beating New Zealand in the Round of 16 and then Turkey in the Quarter-finals. Unfortunately, virtually all betting firms are supporting USA, while some are not even giving out odds for the Americans as they believe they are going to be automatic winners.
Bet365 has assigned odds of 1.61 (8/13) for USA to win the World Cup, while Spain is in second place with odds of 2.40 (7/5). When it comes to wagering on Game Lines, odds for Lithuania +26.5 stand at 1.95 (20/21). In addition to offering good odds, Bet365 also offers a welcome package of 100% Max EUR 50 for its sportsbook section.
There is also another interesting point that is worth mentioning. The World Cup competition in Spain this year will be the last time that event is held every four years. After the tournament closes, the next competition will be held in 2019, making the time in between World Cups have an unorthodox odd number of 5 years from one event to the next.