Karabatic surpasses another milestone

FEATURE: Nikola Karabatic will tie his coach, Didier Dinart, as the record holder of appearances in the EHF EURO, as the game against Serbia will be his 57th in the competition

In a distinguished 16-year playing career, Didier Dinart won two gold medals (2006, 2010) and a bronze medal (2008) in the EHF EURO, while representing France in eight consecutive Men’s EHF European Championships.

Therefore, it was no surprise that the defensive stalwart racked up 57 games in the competition, to top the all-time appearances in the EHF EURO.

However, Dinart’s record will be tied on Monday by no other than his former teammate and current player, Nikola Karabatic.

The 33-year old left back is also taking part in his eight consecutive EHF EURO and will complete the milestone in a special game for him, against Serbia, the country he was born in.

“The number of matches does not matter, for me it is important that I scored more goals than Didier,” said a tongue-in-cheek Karabatic after the game against Sweden.

“Every game is key in such a competition, therefore the next one, against Serbia, will be as important as the one against Sweden was,” added PSG’s player.

Karabatic is the second most prolific goal scorer in the history of the EHF EURO, with 238 goals, 33 less than the all-time leader, Gudjon Valur Sigurdsson.

France’s left back has already passed Dinart as one of the most decorated players in the EHF EURO history, winning three gold medals (2006, 2010 and 2014) and a bronze medal in 2008.  

“When I was a player, I did not care much for these records. I only cared about France winning more titles. The statistics are not that important for me, what is important is the team. And both as a player and as a coach, I cannot stress Nikola’s importance as a team player,” concluded Dinart.

written by Adrian Costeiu / br