Americans show Caster some love after an eventful week

FULL STEAM Caster Semenya will run her favourite 800m next weekend. Picture: EPA / Noushad Thekkayil
FULL STEAM Caster Semenya will run her favourite 800m next weekend. Picture: EPA / Noushad Thekkayil

Caster Semenya’s lawyer says they would consider all avenues regarding whether to legally challenge the Royal Moroccan Athletics Federation after it snubbed the 800m world champion over the Diamond League meeting in Rabat last weekend.

Semenya was initially invited to run the 800m, but Morocco’s athletics governing body’s “sudden and unjustified withdrawal” left the 28-year-old with no option but to shun the reinvitation that came at the eleventh hour.

However, Semenya’s lawyer, Greg Nott, said that their focus was now on the looming appeal against the IAAF judgment at the Swiss Federal Court.

“We are going to consider all avenues. It is not out of the question [to take Moroccan Athletics to task], although our focus is naturally on the appeal process. That is our main and most significant goal,” Nott said.

The Americans, however, have shown Semenya some love amid the eventful week in which the middle-distance star accused the IAAF of using her body “as a human guinea pig experiment” by forcing her to take medication to control her naturally occurring testosterone levels – something she was forced to do between 2010 and 2015.

This followed the Court of Arbitration for Sport’s releasing a 163-page judgment explaining why it had decided to rule against Semenya in a landmark case last month. The multiple record holder will return to the track at the US Diamond leg of the Prefontaine Classic in Stanford in the US next Sunday.

She was initially entered for the 3 000m final, but, according to the meeting organisers, her representatives requested that she be moved to the 800m.

“She has considered other distances that she knows she can compete in, but she is the champ and she won’t be dictated to by inhumane directives,” added Nott.

The race will be Semenya’s first over the two-lapper since she won the Diamond League series opener in Doha, Qatar, last month.

She will get a chance to add to her tally of eight points on the Diamond race standings.

Semenya is placed fifth, 11 points adrift of the leader, Nelly Jepkosgei of Kenya.


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