Semenya moves on

2009-09-09 12:06

SOUTH African middle distance star Caster Semenya will be returning

to action this weekend.

She will turn out in the women’s 4km race at the South African

Cross Country Championships in Pretoria.

The short race has been dropped from the schedule at the

championships and Semenya’s coach, Michael Seme, says the athlete is under no

pressure to perform.

“She’s been selected by her province, so she will run, but it will

just be training for her. If the other ladies are jogging, then maybe she can

finish in the top 10, but even if she finishes second, nothing will happen

because there is no team she can be selected for, so she’s just going to

jog.”

Seme says it is a blessing in disguise that he has been left in the

dark about the gender verification tests.

Media reports have claimed that Semenya had already been tested by

Athletics South Africa (ASA) in July without her knowledge (she reportedly

thought she was undergoing a doping test) - which has been denied by ASA

president Leonard Chuene - but the International Association of Athletics

Federations have confirmed they conducted tests on the athlete before the World

Championships.

But Seme, who was in South Africa while Semenya was in Berlin, says

the lack of communication from the governing bodies had done both of them a

world of good.

“I don’t know anything about these tests,” Seme says, “but I think

that was good for me, because even when they started saying things in Berlin, I

knew nothing like everybody else.

“When I heard the story about the tests I became confused just like

everyone else,” he said. “I’m still not clear on everything.”


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