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Paris 2024 Olympics: Nicolas Batum doesn’t want France to become a ‘global laughing stock’

France basketball captain Nicolas Batum criticized the organization of the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris in an interview with RMC Sport on Saturday, while his sport has not officially found a venue. According to Batum, not giving basketball a leading platform will affect the image of France, and the sport is king, especially in the United States.

“Team USA is the attraction of the Olympics, they are the stars, the gods of the Olympics,” he says. This is a fact, it is not meant to highlight basketball. And all this can affect the image of my sport and Paris 2024. After that we’re going to go to Los Angeles in 2028 (for the Olympics, editor’s note) and I know what we’re going to do as French people. I don’t want to be a laughing stock for the whole world. Because after Paris it will be the highest level. »

But more than the location, Batum is irritated by the lack of preparedness of the organizers of the 2024 Olympics. “I don’t care if we play in Lille, I already played there at Euro 2015 and it was one of the biggest fans of my career,” he explained to RMC Sport. But the problem is much more serious. We are holding the Olympics in France, we are an extraordinary European capital… And we asked ourselves this question (about where the tournament will be held – editor’s note) twenty months ago. »

“We’re in Paris, damn it. We have a great French team overall, the Games are played at home and twenty months ago we don’t know where we do volleyball, where we do handball and where we do basketball. That’s what pisses me off…” he continued.

The choice of basketball court has been the subject of sharp criticism from players of the French national team for several months, spearheaded by defender Evan Fournier. Initially, the preliminary stage of the tournament was planned to be held at the Porte de Versailles Exhibition Park in the south of the capital, but then the Paris Olympic Organizing Committee decided to abandon it.

Since the start of this controversy, basketball has still not found a base, and the latest trend is that the qualifying stages are taking place in Lille.

Source: Le Parisien

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