Betting on Water Polo at the 2021 Summer Olympics

By in Olympics on
18 Minute Read

The Summer Olympics continue to roll on in Tokyo and the action is coming at sports fans fast and furious in the opening week. Betting opportunities for those who like to wager seem to grow with each passing day. And one of the sports you could be betting is water polo, which provides many different types of wagering options for excellent variety.

The sports world is once again embracing the Summer Olympics, especially after it had to be postponed from its intended starting date in 2020. Many of the sports and events have already handed out medals, with surprises already popping up when considering some of the winners. That means that bettors are already receiving good value, as long as they’ve made the right selections.

Many of the sports involved feature individual matchups between countries in preliminary rounds well before the gold medal. Those sports give you the chance of betting all through the Games before it even gets to the medal round. And water polo, a staple of the Summer Olympics, is one of those sports.

Water Polo Action at the Olympics

For just about every day during the Summer Olympics in 2021 in Tokyo, Japan, there will be water polo contests pitting national teams against one another. That will eventually lead to the single-elimination tournament that will determine the medals. All of those individual games will be ripe for betting action at top sports gambling websites.

On top of that, you can also wager on who the medalists will be in each of the main competitions. Hence, water polo provides a little bit more in the way of variety than your average Olympic event. For that reason, and a few others, you should definitely consider adding water polo to the list of Olympic events you plan to be betting in the next few weeks.

In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about wagering on water polo in the 2021 Summer Olympics. We’ll take a look at how you can get started and how the betting odds work. On top of that, we’ll talk about the different types of water polo bets that are available to you and tell you about some strategies to help out with your bets.

Getting Started With Water Polo Wagering

Betting on water polo at the 2021 Summer Olympics is a relatively simple process once you get the hang of it. It’s a process that you can attack, legally that is, in one of two ways. Your choices:

  • Visit a sportsbook near you. At these establishments, which sometimes stand alone and other times are parts of casinos of horse racing tracks, you can wager at teller windows or self-bet kiosks on whatever betting offerings are provided. You would then collect the money from the same place that you bet.
  • Use a sports betting website. You can use a local site that is sanctioned by the state where you’re living. Or, if that’s not available to you, you can use one of the betting sites that are located at offshore sites where sorts gambling is legal.

Frankly, we would suggest the second option as the most convenient one. Even if you do have a legal sportsbook establishment near you, it can be difficult to get to it. And the perks offered by the best 2021 Tokyo Olympics betting sites are also much more substantial that what you can get from land-based options.

The one thing that you should do before plunging into online betting is to check out the sites to make sure they are reliable and safe. They should also provide you with the finest betting experience in terms of variety of wagers and bonuses provided. Here is a list of what we believe are the best sites for wagering on the Summer Olympics:

Once you’ve discovered your site, signing up is the first step you have to take. You need to have an account to wager on water polo at top gambling websites, because you can’t just dip in and make wagers on a guest basis. Luckily, signing up for these sites is pretty easy:

  1. Find the sign-up link and click on it. From there, you’ll have to offer some information about yourself while also coming up with a user name and password. In addition, you might have to confirm the account.
  2. Provide funding for your account. This will allow you to make real money wagers on the water polo action at the Summer Olympics. The site will let you the methods of funding available to you, methods which can include everything from credit cards to cryptocurrency.
  3. Cash in any bonuses which are available. Most top real money sports gambling sites will try to entice customers with bonuses to secure their business. You might be eligible for both an introductory bonus and one tied into an Olympics promotion.
  4. Make your wagers. You’ll be able to find water polo by clicking on the links for Olympic wagering. From there, you can locate the exact bet you’re trying to make.
  5. Collect any money that you’ve won. To do that, you simply have to make a withdrawal request to which the site will respond. If you’ve chosen your gambling website well, the payback should be quick and delivered to the outlet that you’ve chosen.

One more thing you need to know before making your first Olympics water polo wagers is the information you’ll be expected to provide when you make your bets:

  • Know the event you’re going to be betting
  • Know what choice you’re going to make within the bet
  • Know what type of bet it will be
  • Know how much you’re going to wager

One of the characteristics that sets the best sports betting sites apart is that they make all of tis pretty easy for you, even if you’ve never done it before. There’s no reason to be intimidated by the process. Making wagers on Olympic water polo isn’t too difficult, and once you’ve done it a few times, you should be able to do it without even thinking about it.

Understanding Olympic Water Polo Odds

If you’re new to betting on sports at top gambling websites, the system of odds that is used might seem baffling to you. In actuality, it’s relatively easy to get the hang of it. And once you do, you’ll be able to immediately figure out how much you’ll get potentially paid in return for each of the different water polo wagers you can make.

Every type of wager you can make on water polo at various wagering sites is based on the concept known as the moneyline. The moneyline is set up by oddsmakers in an effort to roughly get an even amount of money wagered on each possible outcome. In that way, the website doesn’t ever have to worry about taking too much of a hit from a single wager’s outcome.

The moneyline is based on $100, no matter if you’re dealing with a favorite or a long shot. How you read the wager depends on whether there is a minus sign or a plus sign in front of the line. What we mean is this:

  • If there is a minus sign in front of the number, it means you have to bet that number to win $100 in return.
  • If there is a plus sign in front of the number, it means you have to bet $100 to win that number in return.

Keep in mind that a winning bet will also include whatever you wagered returned to you as well. Anything that you win will be profit. Here is an example of how the moneyline works:

  • Option A: -200
  • Option B: +225

In this example of a two-option bet, which is similar to what you would see if you were wagering on a match between two water polo teams, Option A is the favorite and Option B is the underdog. A bet of $200 on Option A will return you $100 in profit if you win the wager. And a bet of $100 on Option B will return you $225 if you’re correct.

This system is set up based on winning $100 or betting $100. But that doesn’t mean that you’re limited to betting either $100 or, in this example, $200. You can bet as much or as little as you want as long as you stay within the limits of the gambling site that you’re using, and the moneyline will still be in place.

When you bet a different amount, the moneyline serves as a ratio that will govern that wager. In our example, the ratio is as follows:

  • Option A: $1 won for every $2 bet
  • Option B: $2.25 won for every $1 bet

As a result of this ratio, you can project how much you would win based on other betting amounts. For example, a $100 bet on Option A would return $100 in profit. And a $200 bet on Option B would return $450 in profit.

Once you know how to read the moneyline, you should be able to look for value bets and spot them very quickly. You’ll also be able to decide if the projected payout is where you want it to be. And you’ll basically be able to move through the different water polo wagers and categorize them quickly into bets you might consider and ones which aren’t for you.

Why You Should Be Considering Wagering On Olympic Water Polo

Every day of the 2021 Summer Olympics you’ll be inundated with different sports as you try to sift through them all on the different television channels carrying the action. Water polo can easily get lost in the shuffle with all of that traffic. But you should consider keeping it as part of your betting rotation, for the reasons that we’re about to disclose.

  • Because of the familiarity of team sports betting, you might have more of a feel for water polo wagering than is the case for other Olympic sports. After all, many of the bets you can make would be similar to what you could do with NFL football. For American sports fans, that’s an easy transition to make.
  • Volleyball features teams that are often in competition throughout the years, even in between Olympic Games. This is as opposed to basketball, where it might be a different international squad in each year of competition. As a result, you might be able to track form a little bit better with this sport than with some others.
  • You can get a good feel for water polo by watching matches. It’s not like an event where athletes are basically going against a clock and it can be hard to tell when they’re performing well and when they’re not. With water polo, you can get a feel for how a team is controlling a match (or being controlled) in much the same way you can do so when watching basketball, soccer or football.

Types of Olympic Water Polo Wagers

Another advantage of volleyball that we didn’t mention above was the fact that you can wager on it a variety of ways, which gives you a lot of options. You can pick and choose from among these options to find the wagers that suit you the best. But first you have to know how all the wagers work.

Each of these betting choices in the sport of water polo will come with a different risk level and possible reward. That will also depend on the odds as determined by the moneyline. Take a look at the opportunities you’ll have when you make your Olympic water polo wagers.

Medals Betting

With the medals bets, you’re simply trying to come up with the team that will win either the gold medal at the end of the Olympic water polo competition or any medal. If you’re betting on who will win the gold, you’ll have better odds than if you’re just wagering on a team to medal. You’ll have to decide how strongly you feel about a specific country’s team.

The Advantage of Betting on the Medalists Is That You Can Conceivably Get Good Value From It

The advantage of betting on the medalists is that you can conceivably get good value from it. You’ll be wagering from among several men’s and women’s water polo teams. Any time that you have a lot of options from which to choose when you make a bet, you’ll have a good chance of making a lot on even a small wager if you choose one of the long shots.

One thing that you have to watch now that the preliminary matches have begun is that the odds at top gambling websites will be changing by the day. They’ll be adjusted to respond to how well teams are doing to that point. Try to get in with these wagers at the right time, because once you lock in your bet, your odds won’t change.

Individual Game Bets

Each day there will be fresh contests in the Olympic water polo competition, and you’ll be able to wager on them all the way through. With individual match wagers, you’ll be able to choose from an either/or scenario. Sometimes you’ll be choosing between the two teams, and other times you’ll be choosing a certain outcome in terms of the score.

If you’re looking for bets where the variance is a little lower and you’re dealing with more of a sure thing, the individual water polo matches are a good way to go. You’ll have a chance to grind out a profit by racking up multiple small-profit victories. Here are some of the bets you can make on individual water polo matches at the 2021 Summer Olympic Games.

Match Winner

This one is as simple as it gets, as you’ll just be trying to pick the winner of a match between two countries being held at some point during the Olympic competition. The moneyline will be set in such a way so that you might be tempted to go with the underdog if the value is right. Or you can pick the favorite and take the small profit that’s coming to you.

Betting on the winner is a great wager for someone who is new to sports wagering and doesn’t want to get bogged down in any other possibilities. All you have to do is worry about who comes out on top. More experienced bettors might want to try something else that is a bit more complex than that.

Spread Betting

Water polo is determined by whichever team scores more goals than the other. Unlike other team sports where goals are scored when a projectile is guided into a net, water polo scores can be substantial, as goals are much easier to come by. That makes spread betting a little bit more manageable in this sport.

A spread is instituted by the oddsmaker as a way of evening out the two teams. Goals will be added to the underdog or taken away from the favorite, depending on how you want to look at it, for the sake of the wager. As an example of a spread bet in water polo, it might look something like this:

  • Team A: -4 ½ (-110)
  • Team B: +4 ½ (-110)

In this example, Team A is the favorite and Team B the underdog. As a result, when the game is over, you would apply the spread to the final score to see who is on the winning side of the bet. For example:

  • Team A wins by 3 goals. Once you take away the 4 ½ goals via the spread, Team B comes out ahead and wins the bet.
  • Team A wins by 8 goals. Even after taking away the 4 ½ goals, they still come out ahead by 3 ½ goals and win the bet.
  • Team B wins by 9 goals. In this case, adding the goals to Team B just adds to the margin of victory. Team B wins he bet.

Spread betting in Olympic water polo is often set up with half-goal lines. That prevents any betting ties. You might find spread betting to be more to your liking than betting on who wins the match, especially if you like the idea of both teams coming into the match on even terms.

You’ll note that the moneyline is still involved in spread wagering. But it will usually be close to even money when it comes to spread betting. That’s because the oddsmakers has used the spread as a way of evening out the two teams and doesn’t have to do it further with an unbalanced moneyline.

Over/Under Betting

In the case of over/under betting on Olympic water polo, which is sometimes known as totals betting, you can wager on a game without actually speculating on the performance of one team or the other individually. You are instead trying to see how both teams will do in terms of the goals that they score during the match. Adding that total up will determine the over/under wager.

The oddsmakers at a top sports gambling site will set the line based on how many goals the two teams might score combined. You then have to guess if the final score of the two teams will go over or under that number. For example, check out the following line:

  • Over/Under 20 ½ (-110)

This is letting you know that the moneyline is -110 no matter which side you take. If the final score ends up 23-10, the over wins, since 33 goals were scored, which is over 20 ½. But if the final score ends up 9-8, the under wins, since 17 is less than 20 ½.

Note that it doesn’t matter which team wins the game when it comes to a totals bet. That means you don’t necessarily have to know too much about the teams involved to make your wager. You just have to try and estimate what the flow of the game is going to be like and whether it will be high-scoring or low-scoring compared to the line.

Summer Olympics Water Polo Wagering Tips

Water polo is not a sport that gets a lot of attention from the public in the years when the Olympics are not taking place. For that reason, you might feel like wagering on it is a bit of a shot in the dark. But there are ways that you can improve your chances even if you don’t know the ins and outs of every single nation’s team that is competing.

The key to wagering on water polo, or any kind of sport for that matter, is to go into it with a sound strategy. And then you should try to stick to that strategy as much as possible. Here are some tips to take with you as you try to build that strategy.

Check Out the Form

If you were going to bet on a horse race, chances are you’d take a look at how the horses have been performing in recent races. Water polo should be no different in terms of your assessment. The best way to have a good feel for assessing the wagers available in Olympics water polo is to look at how the teams have been playing.

The good news is that the action is already underway for the water polo competition and all the teams on both the men’s and the women’s side have begun play. That means you have plenty of results to analyze. Of course, the oddsmakers are keeping track of all of this as well, but you can still find opportunities for value if you look hard enough.

This applies to more than just the head-to-head single-game betting. You might be able to find a sneaky long shot for the medals stand if you analyze the results well. And, for over-under betting, pay close attention to the scores of previous games to see if specific teams are prone to offensive slugfests or defensive struggles.

Identify What You’re Trying to Accomplish

One of the best ways to reach your goals when betting on Olympics water polo is to first identify what those goals are. That means you have a firm of understanding of what kind of risk you want to take on with each wager. And you also know what kind of return you’re hoping to gain.

Once you’ve established all that, you can choose your bets from the odds board at top gambling sites. For example, if you’re looking for a big payback, there is no sense wasting your time on betting on heavy favorites in individual games. You’d be taking on risk without having a chance at getting the return that you want.

Instead, you’d be wise to look for bets that bring you the kind of odds you need for that payback. Consider perhaps a single-game bet on a long shot or a mid-priced country on the medals odds board. If you make your bets based on what you hope to win rather than what country’s water polo team stands out to you in the moment, you have a much better chance of being satisfied in the moment.

Find the Best Odds for You

If you’re set on a certain country’s team winning a water polo medal or have a strong feeling about a head-to-head individual matchup, you have an advantage in that you’re going into the bet with confidence. But you shouldn’t stop there when it comes to a wager like that. You should consider shopping around for the odds that make your best either more lucrative or easier for you to win.

For Example:

Let’s say that you have an underdog that you like in an individual matchup. At one site, the spread is +4 ½ and, at another, it’s +5 ½. It makes sense for you to use the second site, since you’ll be getting a goal more there, which gives you a better chance of winning.

This is a technique known as line shopping, but we have to stress that it’s better to do it as long as you stay within the group of reliable betting sites. Signing up with an inferior site just because of a single line can be problematic down the road. If you are going to line shop, don’t go too far astray just for a couple of extra goals on a spread.

2021 Summer Olympics Water Polo Schedule

As we said, the action has already begun in the 2021 Summer Olympics water polo competition, with preliminary rounds underway at the Tatsumi Water Polo Centre. But there is still plenty of action left even before we get to the tournament that will determine the medalists on the men’s and women’s side. Here is a look at the schedule:

  • July 24 to August 2: Preliminary pool play for both men’s and women’s teams
  • August 3: Women’s Quarterfinals
  • August 4: Men’s Quarterfinals
  • August 5: Women’s Semifinals and Classification Matches
  • August 6: Men’s Semifinals and Classification Matches
  • August 7: Women’s Gold Medal, Bronze Medal and Classification Matches
  • August 8: Men’s Gold Medal, Bronze Medal and Classification Matches

Teams to Watch in the 2021 Summer Olympics Water Polo Competition

So far in the 2021 Summer Olympics water polo action, certain teams have stepped forth. That should give you an idea of what to expect for the rest of the tournament. Here are some of the teams that figure to be battling it out for medals when all is said and done.

  • Spain Women: The Spanish women have vaulted to the top of Group A with wins in their first two preliminary matches. Their goal differential is highest of anyone in the tournament so far. This team believes that they can hang with the Americans.
  • United States Women: The US comes in as the two-time defending champion in women’s water polo. And they’ve shown no signs of letting up so far this year with wins in their first two matches. It looks lie it could be setting up for a showdown between them and Spain.
  • United States Men: A pair of tight victories in the first two matches have the US believing in their medal chances. They haven’t medaled in Men’s water polo since 2008. But they are certainly putting themselves in good position to turn that around.
  • Spain Men: Spain is so far the only team in Group B with wins in both of their first two matches. Granted those two wins have only come by three goals combined. But it still has Spain feeling good about what would be their first men’s water polo medal in 21 years.
  • Croatia Men: Coming off their gold medal win in 2016, the Croatian men’s team was expecting big things. A loss to Australia dampened their enthusiasm just a bit. But this is still a dangerous squad that is certainly capable of revving it up once again when the medals are on the line.

2021 Summer Olympics Water Polo Odds

You should have no problem finding odds on water polo at the 2021 Summer Olympics and the best sports gambling sites. Make sure to keep checking back each day to find the lines for individual games that are coming up. But in the meantime, here is what the futures odds to win the men’s water polo gold medal look like at, which is one of the top gambling sites available for Olympics wagering:


  • Hungary: +275
  • Serbia: +300
  • Spain: +300
  • Italy: +400
  • Croatia: +500
  • Montenegro: +700
  • Greece: +1400
  • United States: +8000
  • Australia: +40000
  • Japan: +100000
  • Kazakhstan: +200000
  • South Africa: +200000


  • United States: -500
  • Australia: +900
  • Hungary: +900
  • Spain: +900
  • Netherlands: +1000
  • Russian Olympic Committee: +1400
  • Canada: +5000
  • China: +15000
  • Japan: +50000
  • South Africa: +100000


We hope that this article gives you the springboard you need to wager on the action at the 2021 Summer Olympics water polo competition. If you’re looking to make wagers on the water polo action, use this page as your resource. If you do and do a little bit of homework along the way, you should give yourself a good chance at some winning bets along the way.

Jim Beviglia

Jim Beviglia joined as a staff writer in 2018, parlaying his years of freelance writing into contributions on a number of different topics. He handles the sport of horse racing for and the intersection between the worlds of cryptocurrency and online gambling in a weekly blog. For his full-time job, Jim handles the television and track announcing duties at a h ...

View all posts by Jim Beviglia
Email the author at: [email protected]