Olympics 2016

Michael O'Reilly admits to taking supplement that may have contained a banned substance

Michael O'Reilly
Michael O'Reilly

Irish boxer Michael O'Reilly has released a statement where he says he unintentionally took a supplement that may have contained a banned substance.

UPDATE 21.06: The Olympic Council of Ireland have released a statement confirming that O'Reilly's Games are over.

'The OCI can today confirm that Michael O’Reilly is no longer contesting the provisional suspension imposed on him on the 4 August 2016 and will not compete for Team Ireland at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. No further communication will be made on the matter.'

The boxer's failed test was broken on Friday and the 23-year old was hit with a provisional suspension.

Since then there has been much confusion over what course of action the Portlaoise native would take, with various reports saying that O'Reilly would launch an appeal, and that he may or may not get his B sample tested.

Now it seems that the slim hopes of O'Reilly managing to stay at the Olympics are surely over.

In the statement, released to RTE, the middleweight says that he was given the "supplement by someone unrelated to his team or association" and that he had disclosed what he took to the testers at the time of the test.

The boxer also apologised to all associated with him from his family to the Irish Athletic Boxing Association.




This evening, it is confirmed that O'Reilly has left the Olympic village in Rio but there is still confusion over whether he has left Brazil on his long trek home.

Assistant Irish boxing coach Eddie Bolger, speaking after David Oliver Joyce's loss, said as far as he knew O'Reilly was on his way home.

However, an official statement issued by the Irish Amateur Boxing Association only confirmed that O'Reilly had left the Olympic village and would have no further involvement in the Rio Olympic Games.

“The Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) will be making arrangements for him to return to Ireland as soon as possible,” said the statement.

Bolger said the coaches had been kept in the dark about the situation.

“I don't want to sound too dismissive of that thing because there are families involved. I never give it a thought because honestly you can't.

“As far as I know now he was dropped his appeal and he's on the way home now,” said Bolger.

The IABA statement said: ''We are very disappointed that Michael may have taken any supplement without consulting the IABA High Performance Support Team. Educating athletes of the risks proposed by supplements is provided to all our boxers as part of the High Performance Programme.”

The statement said it noted that O'Reilly had indicated he had had unintentionally took a supplement that may have contained a prohibited substance. “We note he has offered his sincere apology to his fellow team members, IABA, Sport Ireland and the Olympic Council of Ireland,” he said.

The President of the IABA Pat Ryan, who O'Reilly's club coach, was present in the Riocentro last night to watch Joyce's fight but didn't comment on the controversy.