Karabatic back in France fold after fraud probe
ROUEN, France (AFP) –
Double Olympic handball champion Nikola Karabatic joined up with the France national squad on Wednesday for the first time since being implicated in a high-profile match-fixing scandal.
Karabatic, along with 10 other people including his brother Luka, is being investigated by police on suspicion of fraud relating to unusual betting patterns on a match involving his club Montpellier and Cesson-Sevigne on May 12.
Montpellier, who were already assured of a 13th league title, lost the game 31-28 but suspicions were raised because of large bets placed at half-time on a loss for the champions.
Karbatic has denied any wrongdoing in the scandal, which has rocked the sport.
His arrival at the French team camp in the northern city of Rouen came the day after he was reinstated by his club.
France face Lithuania in a Euro 2014 qualifier on Thursday.
The player did not take part in training on Wednesday morning and instead went straight to the team hotel, without speaking to the waiting media.
But he wrote on his Facebook page: “Arrived in Rouen! Great to see my mates, the pitch and all the handball fans! I’ve missed you all these last few weeks! Can’t wait to see you at the venues!! See you very soon!”