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Three Irish athletes returned positive doping samples in 2020

A total of 1,045 tests were performed last year.

Image: Brendan Moran/SPORTSFILE

SPORT IRELAND’S ANNUAL anti-doping review for 2020 was published today, showing three positive tests from a total of 1,045 tests across 27 sports. 

The total number of tests conducted was reduced slightly from the 1303 carried out in 2019, a relatively modest decline given the challenges of Covid-19. As a result of the pandemic, the vast majority of tests (83%) were conducted out of competition. 

The anti-doping programme in 2020 cost a total of €1,904,381.61. 

Cycling was the most-tested sport (a total of 191 tests) followed by GAA (138 tests), Rugby (114 tests), Athletics (114 tests) and Rowing (104 tests.)

There were three positive tests in total, one each in GAA (for the use of Meldonium), Triathalon (for the use of ligandrol) and Weightlifting (for the use of Nandrolone.) All three individuals received four-year bans. This is a slight reduction on the four positive cases of the previous year.

Sport Ireland granted 18 Therapeutic Use Exemptions in 2020, with 33% of them granted to rugby players. Shooting and Cycling each accounted for 17% of the TUEs, while hurling accounted for 11%, with a further four sports approved a single TUE.

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About the author:

Gavin Cooney

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