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Published: 19:27 | 4/8/16

Irish boxer fails drug test


An Irish boxer has tested positive for a banned substance the day before the 2016 Olympic Games begins in Rio de Janeiro.

The Olympic Council of Ireland confirmed on Thursday that the male boxer failed the test, taken before the athletes left for Brazil, and has been provisionally suspended from competition.

The boxer's 'A' sample showed up positive and he has been informed of the failed test, but can ask for the 'B' sample to be tested.

The Irish Athletic Boxing Association confirmed that they had been notified by the Irish Sports Council on Thursday that a boxer on their high-performance programme had failed a test.

"In following the strict procedures applying to an adverse analytical finding, the athlete in question has been informed and is provisionally suspended," a statement read.

"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 Olympic Council of Ireland says they are now waiting on the boxer's response.

"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," an OCI statement read.

Although the OCI opted not to name the boxer in question, it has been widely reported that Michael O'Reilly is the athlete in question.

The Portlaoise boxer was one of five Irish fights to receive a bye in the first round with the 23-year-old due to face either Misael Rodríguez of Mexico or Iraqi Waheed Abdul-Ridha on Friday week.

A statement from the IABA added: “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.”

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