Irish boxer Michael O’Reilly reportedly fails drug test

Michael O’Reilly is the boxer at the centre of reports of an alleged violation of anti-doping rules a day before the 2016 Olympic Games begin in Rio de Janeiro.

The Irish Athletic Boxing Association confirmed that an Irish boxer had been provisionally suspended from competing at Rio 2016 after testing positive for a banned substance.

The IABA was notified by Sport Ireland today of the alleged violation of Irish anti-doping rules. The boxer, who has yet to be officially named, can request to have his B sample tested but cannot participate in any competition or activity prior to the completion of an investigation under Article 8 of the Irish anti-doping rules.

The Olympic Council of Ireland also confirmed the failed doping test, while withholding the name of the boxer implicated. Clarifying it’s position, a statement released by the national Olympic committee read: “No further communication will be made on the matter and the athlete’s identity will remain confidential unless the sanction is accepted or the B sample is tested and also returns an adverse analytical finding.”

The International Boxing Association stated earlier today that it had not been informed of an Irish boxer having tested positive for a banned substance. The AIBA said that as the test was carried out in Ireland in the run-up to the Olympic that it was up to the national federation to inform the world governing body.

O’Reilly was due to fight in the middleweight division at Rio 2016. The Portlaoise fighter was crowned champion in his weight class at the European Games in Azerbaijan in June 2015 and claimed a bronze medal at the World Championships in Qatar four months later. O’Reilly only secured a berth at Rio 2016 at the eleventh hour when he won gold in a late qualifier for the Games.

Full IABA statement:

The Irish Athletic Boxing Association (IABA) has been notified by Sport Ireland today of an alleged violation of the Irish Anti-doping Rules committed by one of the boxers in our High Performance Unit.

In following the strict procedures applying to an adverse analytical finding, the athlete in question has been informed and is provisionally suspended. The boxer can request to have  a “B” sample tested but cannot participate in any competition or activity prior to the completion of an investigation under Article 8 of the Irish Anti-doping Rules.

The Irish Athletic Boxing Association has always maintained a zero tolerance approach to doping and Irish Boxing has been one of the most widely tested sports by the National Anti-Doping Programme over the last number of years.

IABA’s policy is that doping is contrary to the spirit of sport and every member of the association has a duty to ensure that the sport is free of doping. We ensure our boxers are available for testing in and out of competition.

The Irish Athletic Boxing Association will not be in a position to comment further until all elements of due process associated with the anti-doping programme are completed in this case.

Full OCI statement:

“The Olympic Council of Ireland can confirm that the Sport Ireland Anti-Doping Agency has returned an adverse analytical finding in an A-sample provided to anti-doping officers.

“The finding relates to a test not conducted at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. The athlete has been provisionally suspended from competition and can take part in no sports activity, including training, in accordance with the WADA Code.

“The athlete will now decide whether to accept a sanction for a doping violation, to request that a B-sample be tested, or to appeal the provisional suspension.

“No further communication will be made on the matter and the athlete’s identity will remain confidential unless the sanction is accepted or the B-sample is tested and also returns an adverse analytical finding.”

 

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