Athletics

Semenya back on track after Rio gold

Caster Semenya (Getty Images)
Caster Semenya (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Caster Semenya will start her post-Olympic season when she competes at the IAAF Diamond League in Zurich on Thursday.

Earlier this month, Semenya won gold for South Africa in the women’s 800m final at the Rio Olympic Games.

She cruised to the finish line with a personal best of 1:55:28 and ended off the country’s successful Olympic campaign, as SA finished with a medal tally of 10.

The 26-year-old is set to continue her winning form with her race scheduled to begin at 21:02 (SA time) on Thursday.

There are two scenarios to watch out for in the 800m featuring Semenya:

It will be the first race since the Rio final that Semenya and Great Britain’s Lynsey Sharp will compete and go head-to-head.

Sharp was criticised for her comments regarding the South African. She said it was “difficult” to race against Semenya and expected the IAAF to address the issue of multiple intersex athletes competing.

Secondly, Semenya is two points away from claiming the Diamond Trophy.

Burundi’s Francine Niyonsaba, the 800m Olympic silver medallist, is her closest rival.

According to the IAAF website, whichever woman crosses the finish line first will automatically win the trophy. However, if neither of them make the top four, Semenya will take the title.

Other South Africans participating in the Swiss country are Akani Simbine, who will run in the men’s 100m, and Wenda Nel - in the women’s 400m hurdles.

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