The beauty of sport is that you can never tell for sure who’s going to win an event and below, we list some excellent examples to reinforce this theory. Those who came second best despite being overwhelming favorites, might find this interesting turn of events less fascinating, but the audience loves athletes who beat the odds and the 2012 London Olympics has plenty.

Better teams don’t always win

The United States of America has one of the best rosters at the Olympics, but the Women’s Volleyball team began the match against Brazil with a second chance. Backed by NBA stars and willing to fight until the bitter end, the volleyball team capitalized on their opponents lack of form to win the first two sets 25-18 and 25-17. The reigning world champions fired back and won the third set, but the Americans quickly rebounded and secured a 3-1 victory and suddenly the U.S seems to have another chance at a gold medal.

The one sport where Hungary has an outstanding team is Water Polo and the reigning Olympic champions were regarded as favorites against Montenegro. They’ve lost the opening game against Serbia and found themselves between a rock and a hard place, compelled to level the score against the small Balkan nation. Montenegro dominated the third quarter and built an impressive lead that the en-titre champions found impossible to offset and they are now struggling to qualify to the next stage.

A century long drought is over

Usually a bronze medal goes unnoticed especially in an event such as the Olympics where hundreds are awarded, but Great Britain can be very proud of what its gymnastics team achieved. Five outstanding athletes charmed the audience and scored 271.711 points, which seemed to be enough to secure a silver medal. Despite the fact that the score was eventually changed and Japan leapfroged Britain, the royal audience cheered for the first medal won by the gymnastics team in more than 100 years.

Canoe is a relatively new sport at the Olympics, but it is gaining popularity at an amazing pace due to the fact that this is one of the most spectacular sports. It is not something that one can watch on TV every day, and when the best athletes in the world compete, the show is truly amazing. Everyone expected Slovakia’s Pavol and Peter Hochschorner to claim the Olympic gold, but it was France who prevailed.

The duel between China’s Zhang Jie and DPR Korea’s Kim Un Gok was highly anticipated, and it was the Korean who won the gold medal at weightlifting. He managed to break the Olympic record and tie the world record, while his personal best surpassed both records. Figueroa Mosquera and Eko Yuli were the other pleasant surprises of this competition, as these two athletes earned the silver and bronze medals.