Caster Semenya Denied Entry Into Rabat 800 Metres Race
After it was announced that Caster Semenya was free to run the 800m without having to take medication, she has been denied participation in her favoured 800 metres race in Morocco. The upset athlete said on Thursday that despite Switzerland’s highest court rejecting an IAAF request for eligibility regulations to be reimposed on the South African, she is barred from running Morocco race.
She appealed against International IAAF’s rules over testosterone levels in female athletes. Earlier the Swiss Supreme Federal Court ordered the IAAF to suspend its testosterone regulations Semenya until June 25. The IAAF wanted a rule making it compulsory for female athletes with high level of testosterone to take suppressant if they wish to compete with the other women participants in international sporting events such as Olympics.
“No woman should be subjected to these rules,” Semenya said. “I thought hard about not running the 800m in solidarity unless all women can run free. But I will run now to show the IAAF that they cannot drug us.”
It was extended further after hearing submissions from the IAAF and Athletics South Africa over an appeal against a May 1 Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) award upholding the rules. Now her request to race in Rabat this weekend has been denied by the Royal Moroccan Athletics Federation, without explaining reasons.
Semenya’s lawyers in a statement said that she was seeking clarity over this apparent “violation” of the SFT order. “The IAAF continues to comply with the Swiss Federal Tribunal’s order dated 31 May to suspend the DSD Regulations in as far as they apply to the appellant,” the ruling body said.
“It should be noted that the Diamond League meetings are not organised by the IAAF. Entry for any athlete into a Diamond League meeting is by invitation only from the meeting organiser,” it added.
“I am a woman, but the IAAF has again tried to stop me from running the way I was born,” she said.
Semenya, the 800m Olympic title winner in 2012 and 2016, was fighting IAAF’s imposed “hyperandrogenic” rules — the regulations for athletes with Differences of Sexual Development who want to compete in the female category.
Feature Picture Credit: BBC