Did King Filip apologise?

Mystery surrounds claims that the King of the Belgians apologised to judoka Dirk Van Tichelt after the Belgian sportsman won a bronze medal at the Rio Olympics and didn't get to speak to the king on the phone. Dirk Van Tichelt claims this happened, but King Filip’s spokesman has denied this.

Dirk Van Tichelt told VRT Radio that he hadn't received a call from anybody from the royal family after he won a bronze medal at the Rio Olympics. VRT's radio host immediately put Van Tichelt on the line with Prince Laurent, King Filip's younger brother and seen by many as the enfant terrible of the royal house of Saxony-Coburg-Gotha.

Dirk Van Tichelt shook King Filip's hand at a ceremony celebrating Belgian medal winners last week. The judoka later told newsmen that King Filip had apologised for failing to make the call.

This account of events has now been countered by a court spokesman who insists King Filip didn't forget to make the call and did not apologise.

"King Filip put in a call twice, but Van Tichelt could not be reached. A telegram was then sent."

Dirk Van Tichelt's manager, Maximiliaan Vandomme, insists that the king did apologise: "Everybody shook hands and was personally congratulated. It's at this point that the king apologised for the fact that he hadn't called."