The world wrestling governing body has banned Iranian Alireza Karimi for six months after finding him guilty of losing a fight so he wouldn’t have to face an Israeli opponent.

An investigation found him guilty of deliberately losing last November’s quarter-final at the U23 wrestling world championships in Poland, allowing Russian Alikhan Zhabrayilov to beat him, rather than face Israeli Uri Kalashnikov.

Karimi’s coach, Hamidreza Jamshidi, was banned for two years for instructing his wrestler to lose.

A statement read: “The chamber found that Karimachiani, on instruction of his coach Jamshidi, willfully lost his quarter finals match against Alikhan Zhabrayilov. Both wrestler and coach were found to have acted in direct violation of the International Wrestling Rules and the UWW Disciplinary Regulations.”