SPORT Ireland has confirmed in a statement that it has sanctioned Kerry footballer Brendan O’Sullivan for an anti-doping rule violation but accepts that the player "bore no significant fault or negligence" for the infraction.
It has also confirmed that it reduced the applicable sanction - which has been served in two parts - to seven months, after the initial ban was lifted.
O’Sullivan, from the Valentia club, was originally banned for 21 weeks for testing positive for the stimulant methylhexaneamine ("MHA").
O’Sullivan was tested on April 24, 2016 after playing as a substitute for Kerry in the National League Final against Dublin. He accepted he had committed an anti-doping rule violation and engaged in a consultation process with Sport Ireland under the Irish Anti-Doping Rules regarding the sanction to be imposed on him.
"Sport Ireland accepted that it was a contaminated product case, that Mr. O’Sullivan bore no significant fault or negligence and reduced the applicable sanction to seven months," the statement Monday states.
Sport Ireland sets out the chronology of events, confirming the Kerry midfielder appealed the Sport Ireland sanction and did so again when the matter was referred to the GAA Anti-Doping Committee.
It imposed an updated period of ineligibility of six months on Mr. O’Sullivan following a hearing on February 13th.
O’Sullivan appealed that decision on March 16, 2017 to the Irish Sport Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel, which imposed a period of ineligibility of 21 weeks following a hearing on March 30th 2017. The remaining 10 weeks of ineligibility this year has now been completed, having commenced on February 26th, the date of his last participation in the Kerry panel.
The Disciplinary Panel, which is an independent panel of experts from legal, sports administration and medical backgrounds, has indicated that it will give its reasoned decision shortly and this decision will be published by Sport Ireland on receipt in line with standard practice, along with the decision of the GAA Anti-Doping Committee.
Sport Ireland advises athletes there are no guarantees that any supplement is safe (free from prohibited substances). If an athlete chooses to consume a supplement Sport Ireland recommends they seek advice from a sports dietician and follow Sport Ireland’s risk minimisation guidelines.