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Olympian Jack Woolley Speaks Bravely About His Attack On Late Late

Olympian Jack Woolley Speaks Bravely About His Attack On Late Late

Irish Olympian Jack Woolley has received plenty of praise after his appearance on the Late Late Show.

Back in August, the taekwondo Olympian was out for dinner with his friends, but things took a turn for the worst.

The 22-year-old got caught up in a horrible attack in Dublin's city centre which left him with bloody injuries, some of which required surgery.

In an Instagram post, Woolley explained what happened to him on that night.

Last night (Friday 13th August) I went for a meal with my friend. Followed by a bar for a couple of drinks. Heading back along the River Liffey a gang of roughly 8-12 men and women in their 20s began violently attacking people along the boardwalk.

Unfortunately I was victim to these random attacks as I was just walking bye before I was punched in the face by one of these group members. Only one punch and followed by “my mistake wrong person” then they continued to run off down the road attacking more civilians minding their own business.

Warning - graphic content in second picture below

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Jack Woolley (@jack__woolley__)

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On Friday night, Woolley appeared opposite Ryan Tubridy to explain what happened to him on the night, and voice a message for those were caught up in violence like him.

"We were just walking down the road," he said. "There were a lot of people on the one side, on the boardwalk area, with music and speakers just having a good time."

"We thought we would walk past and see if we knew anybody and if not just get a taxi home. We couldn't see anyone and got to the top of the street when we heard a lot of noise and commotion."

"A girl was screaming 'who wants a fight?' and I was with two girls, who were having a chat behind me, so I turned back around to make sure they were safe."

"And when I turned back around again there was a fella standing in front of me who hit me in the face. As soon as I got hit, I can remember the taste was like salt water, it was horrible, my mouth was full of blood."

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The aftermath sent the media into a frenzy, as Woolley was a few weeks removed from an appearance representing Ireland at the Tokyo Olympics.

He explained that he wasn't in a fit state to speak to the media or explain what happened until he was treated in hospital and underwent surgery.

"I just put up a picture on my story. Some media took it and they posted articles where they were taking to my friends or talking to family. It was kind of just pieced together, bits here and there and it just didn't add up."

"I read over the articles in the hospital and I says, 'do you know what, I'm going to set the story straight'. I'm going to put up these photographs, grab peoples attention and then they'll read the caption then."

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Wooley then was asked by Tubridy how he had dealt with the attack in the aftermath, and if it had affected him mentally or even in his training.

"No issues, mentally, luckily I've got a very good support system with Sport Ireland so I was still able to work with them," he said.

The young Olympian then spoke about what he was trying to achieve in getting the message across of his brutal beating.

"It's more of what happened and I want to raise awareness rather than me, you know, I'm not too focused on myself, I just don't want it to happen to anyone else."

Woolley is thankfully back in training for upcoming competitions. He's encouraging young people to take place in an Inner City Safety Partnership to make Dublin a safer place to live.

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Jonathan Byrne

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