“ASA will, in turn, decide on the appropriate time, venue and date for an official handover to the athlete”
WHILST Caster Semenya will not be at the championships due to the IAAF’s controversial female eligibility rules, her presence will be felt at the Athletics World Championships in Doha, where she will retrospectively receive her gold medal from the 2011 showpiece in Daegu, South Korea.
Athletics SA (ASA) announced yesterday that Semenya and Olympic javelin silver medallist Sunette Viljoen would have their medals from the 2011 championships upgraded in Doha.
According to ASA, Viljoen will receive her silver medal on October 2 at the Khalifa Stadium at the beginning of the afternoon session while the IAAF will hand Semenya’s medal to ASA in Doha.
“ASA will, in turn, decide on the appropriate time, venue and date for an official handover to the athlete,” the South African athletics federation said in a statement.
In 2017 the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ruled Russian athlete Mariya Savinova be stripped of her gold medals from the London 2012 Olympic Games and 2011 World Championships after she was found guilty of using performance-enhancing drugs. Semenya’s silver medals at both the 2011 world championships and the London 2012 Games have subsequently been upgraded to gold.
She is effectively the first woman to win back-to-back Olympic 800m gold medals and the first female to boast double titles in the two-lap race at the Games.
Semenya won her third 800m gold medal at the 2017 world championships in London, eight years after she won her maiden title in Berlin 2009. She has been barred from competing in her pet event due to the implementation of the IAAF’s controversial female eligibility rules. The regulations ban athletes with Differences in Sexual Development (DSD) from competing in events from the 400m to the mile if they refuse to lower their testosterone to a certain level.
Semenya recently announced she would – in the meantime -swop her spikes for soccer boots when she was signed for the JVW Football Club for 2020.
“I am grateful for this opportunity, and I appreciate the love and support I already get from the team,” Semenya said in a statement released by the club. “I am looking forward to this new journey, and hopefully, I can contribute as much as I can to the club.”
Semenya clarified on social media the shift to football did not mean she was “no longer a track and field athlete”.