Rowing Ireland have earned a funding boost ©Getty Images

Rowing and sailing have been given a boost in high-performance funding by Sport Ireland after success at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, but boxing has seen its share slashed after the country failed to medal in the sport.

Boxing has been Ireland's most prolific medal sport at the Olympics, but they came away empty handed from last year's Games, despite Katie Taylor, Paddy Barnes and Michael Conlan all being highly fancied. 

A "Rio Review" was conducted by the Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Patrick O'Donovan, and delivered a highly critical assessment of the Irish Athletic Boxing Association (IABA).

The review said falling short of their target of three to four medals had "unequivocally" been down to "failings in the high performance programme".

Coach Billy Walsh left the Irish set-up for a job in the United States after contract talks broke down, while the country were also rocked when Conlan was defeated via a controversial judging decision.

As a result, Sport Ireland have reduced the IABA's high performance funding from the 2016 total of €900,000 (£770,000/$953,000) to €700,000 (£599,000/$741,000) this year

"The simple analysis would suggest that the failings in Rio were brought about by a combination of the departure of Billy Walsh as head coach to the programme and a string of unfortunate events including questionable judging decisions, a positive drugs test, and a loss of confidence during the Games as results started to go against the team," the review said. 

"This would mask the real root causes.

"There is no question that the loss of the head coach to the programme was a major blow and was, in our opinion, a factor in the subsequent outcome in Rio.

"However, the fault lines in the programme were present well before his departure.

"Also, at least one of the Irish boxers was defeated, in the view of most neutral observers, in a bizarre judging verdict."

The IABA have had their high performance funding reduced after missing their Rio 2016 medal target ©Getty Images
The IABA have had their high performance funding reduced after missing their Rio 2016 medal target ©Getty Images

The absence of a dedicated high performance director since the departure of Gary Keegan in 2008, coaches performing dual roles and a loss of discipline were also viewed as key to the disappointing result at Rio 2016.

Rowing Ireland has enjoyed a €125,000 (£107,000/$132,000) boost after the silver medal won by Gary and Paul O'Donovan at the Games, while the Irish Sailing Association have received a €120,000 (£102,000/$127,000) increase following Annalise Murphy's silver.

The national governing bodies will receive €525,000 (£449,000/$556,000) and €735,000 (£629,000/$778,000) respectively.

In total, Sport Ireland will invest €7.2 million (£6.1 million/$7.6 million) into high performance programmes, while governing bodies will receive €10.8 million (£9.2 million/$11.4 million) through core grant allocations.

The allocations cover administration, participation programmes, coach development, hosting events, implementing strategic plans and the employment of professional staff.

Further funding will also be given out through Sport Ireland's Women in Sport programme and their international carding scheme, with the latter directly supporting athletes.

The OCI have pledged to work with Sport Ireland to aid the country's athletes ©Getty Images
The OCI have pledged to work with Sport Ireland to aid the country's athletes ©Getty Images

"We welcome the publication of the detail of the 2017 investment programme for Irish athletes and the review of the Rio Olympics by Sport Ireland," said Darren O’Neill, an Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) Executive Committee member.

"It's vital that Sport Ireland works with the OCI and others to put a powerful strategy in place for high performance athletes.

"The OCI has a key role to play in helping athletes on this journey through scholarships, grants, coaching, mentoring and other support.

"We will redouble our efforts in this area and work closely with our member federations to further develop Irish Olympic sport.

"The OCI itself has come through a tumultuous year in 2016.

"The new OCI Executive Committee is determined to address the issues before it and will work in partnership with various bodies to this end."

Away from sport in Rio, Ireland were embroiled in controversy after a scandal that unfolded around former leader Patrick Hickey.

Hickey was arrested in Brazil for alleged involvement in a ticketing scandal.

He denies all wrongdoing and was permitted to return home to Ireland in December for medical treatment.

Hickey is now focusing on clearing his name, as well as recovering from a heart procedure.

Fallout from the scandal has so far cost the organisation €900,688 (£788,000/$958,000) in "emergency expenditure", it has been revealed.

Sarah Keane now leads the OCI, having been elected as the organisation's President in February.