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Michael Conlan after the controversial loss to Vladimir Nikitin.
# Rio 2016
Conlan: 'I hope that justice will be served and I'll have a bit of vindication by the end of this'
Conlan’s loss was among 11 fights suspected of being fixed at 2016 Olympics, a report published today found.

LAST UPDATE | Sep 30th 2021, 8:02 PM

MICHAEL CONLAN SAYS he is “delighted” after an independent report found evidence of corruption and manipulation of fights at the 2016 Olympics.

Conlan’s controversial bantamweight quarter-final loss to Russia’s Vladamir Nikitin was among 11 bouts suspected of being fixed at the Rio Games, a report released today found.

Denied a second Olympic medal, he was outspoken at the time, blasting boxing’s world body AIBA as ‘corrupt’ and ‘rotten to the core’. He tweeted AIBA today: “Lads, I want my medal. Get it sorted and I’ll DM you my address. Thanks, MC.”

The Belfast boxer has since opened up more to media outlets, speaking to Reuters, among others.

“I’m going to be honest, the news today was a shock,” he told Iain Axon. “I thought it was all put to bed, it was finished and nothing was going to happen, but here we are five years later and probably coming to a final close, which is great.

I’m delighted and I hope that justice will be served. It shows that my reactions and my actions during the time were just and now hopefully I’ll have a bit of vindication by the end of this.”

The 2012 bronze medallist continued: “I’m definitely over it. I believe what happened has probably made my professional career better than what it was, it made me a bigger name much quicker than what I was. I think I’m known world-wide more than probably if I had of won a gold medal.

“It’s done good for me, but it took away my dream of becoming an Olympic champion. I’ll never have a chance to get that back, and it’s something I’ll have to live with for the rest of my life.

“If they can say they’re upgrading me and giving my Olympic medal – albeit it would be bronze because you don’t know what would have happened after – I would take it, because, for me, an Olympic medal is unbelievable….

“And to be a double Olympic medallist, which I should have been — even though I believe I should have been champion, but you can’t really tell because there was two more hard fights after that. To be upgraded and have that decision overturned would be fantastic.”

Conlan hammered home his point that he wants his medal, and that is when he would feel vindicated.

“I want my medal, that is when I feel that justice will be done, when they send me that medal in the post. I’ll even go to Switzerland if they will hand me it there.

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“And also if they can take away the 10,000 Swiss Francs (€9,256) they charged me with because of my reaction at the Games, I’ll be happy too. And then a wee apology wouldn’t go amiss.”

Bernard Jackman, Murray Kinsella and Gavan Casey chat all things URC and Ireland Women on the latest episode of The42 Rugby Weekly.

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