Tennis at the Rio 2016 Olympics: All you need to know

Olympic Games on the BBC
Venue: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Dates: 5-21 August Time in Rio: BST -4
Coverage: Watch on BBC One, BBC Four, Red Button and up to 24 HD video streams on mobile, desktop and connected TVs, plus follow on Radio 5 live and via live text commentary.

How does it work?

Like today's leading golfers, the world's tennis stars took a while to warm up to the idea of competing in the Olympic Games when it was re-introduced at Seoul 1988.

Now it is considered by some players as the 'fifth' Grand Slam.

There are five gold medals up for grabs - men's and women's singles and doubles, and mixed doubles - with the likes of world number one Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray, Britain's Wimbledon champion, taking part.

Roger Federer? Unfortunately not. The 17-time Grand Slam champion is out with a knee injury.

All matches are best-of-three sets - except for the men's singles final, which is a best-of-five match.

Anything new for Rio 2016?

Tie-breaks will be used in the deciding set in singles and men's and women's doubles matches. Unlike in recent previous Olympics, there are no ranking points on offer.

Who are the British prospects?

That guy called Andy Murray? The British number one is the defending champion and comes into the Olympics having won Wimbledon for a second time last month.

Murray and brother Jamie have done well when they have paired up in the Davis Cup so will fancy their chances in the men's doubles.

British women's number one Johanna Konta, who has risen to 14th in the world rankings after the best season of her career, is hoping to be a medal contender at her first Games.

Heather Watson won the mixed doubles at Wimbledon - and is hoping to partner Andy Murray at Rio.

But Murray, who won silver alongside Laura Robson at London 2012, could decide to play alongside Konta.

Who are the favourites?

Besides Murray, Serbia's Djokovic will be aiming to bounce back in the men's singles after his premature Wimbledon exit.

Will we see 14-time Grand Slam winner Rafael Nadal in Rio? The world number four missed the French Open and Wimbledon with a wrist injury, but is hoping to be fit enough to compete for Spain.

Switzerland's Stan Wawrinka and Japan's Kei Nishikori are also eyeing the podium, although Canada's beaten SW19 finalist Milos Raonic and Czech world number eight Tomas Berdych have both withdrawn.

Raonic and Berdych are the highest-profile male players to pull out because of fears over the Zika virus, while Romania's world number five Simona Halep has also cited similar health concerns for not competing.

But defending women's singles champion Serena Williams will be there. The world number one arrives in Rio fresh from equalling Steffi Graf's record of 22 Grand Slam titles.

She and sister Venus will be among the women's doubles favourites, having already won Olympic gold in the event three times.

I didn't know that...

John Boland, the first Olympic men's singles champion in 1896, did not have any tennis shoes with him so played in a pair of shoes with leather soles and heels.

Previous British medallists

Forty two (16 gold, 14 silver, 12 bronze)

Most recent British gold

2012 - Andy Murray (men's singles)

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