South African 800-metre Olympic champion Caster Semenya reacts after profitable the ladies’s 200m closing in the course of the Athletics Gauteng North Championships on the LC de Villiers Athletics Stadium in Pretoria on March 13, 2020.
Phill Magakoe / AFP
Star South African 800-metre athlete Caster Semenya stated on Friday she hopes to compete within the 200m on the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Video games.
The 29-year-old is prohibited from defending her 800m Olympics title as a result of she refuses to stick to testosterone rules set by governing physique World Athletics.
Semenya, and different feminine athletes with variations of sexual improvement (DSD), are banned from competing in races between 400m and the mile except they take testosterone-lowering treatment.
She gained the 2012 London and 2016 Rio Olympics 800m titles and was the world champion over the space in 2009, 2011 and 2017.
The South African should clock a 22.80-second 200m to qualify for Tokyo and her finest time, achieved Friday in Pretoria when profitable a provincial championships closing, is 23.49 sec.
“My dream has always been, and will continue to be, to compete at the highest level of sport,” Semenya stated on her Instagram account.
“So with a purpose to pursue my objectives and desires, I’ve determined to alter occasions and compete within the 200m.
“This choice has not been a straightforward one, however I stay up for the problem, and can work exhausting, doing all I can to qualify for Tokyo and compete to the most effective of my capability for South Africa.”
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Semenya took the athletics world by storm 11 years in the past when turning into world champion in Berlin on the age of 19.
However as her record of successes lengthened, rival feminine athletes started to query how the South African may go away them trailing in her wake.
Semenya is amongst a minority of feminine athletes who’ve an unusually excessive degree of testosterone, which supplies them added power.
The media-shy South African has confronted fixed authorized battles throughout her profession, resulting in non permanent bans from competing in her favorite 800m.
The newest testosterone rules left her with a alternative of competing within the 200m or a distance longer than the mile.
She has not returned spectacular occasions over longer distances previously, which prompted her to hunt 200m qualification for Tokyo.
Semenya should trim one other zero.69 sec off her Pretoria time to safe a spot within the South African Olympics workforce.
The 200m world and Olympic information are held by American Florence Griffith-Joyner, who clocked 21.34 sec on the 1988 Seoul Olympics.
Away from athletics, Semenya joined a Johannesburg-based soccer membership final 12 months however was unable to play instantly as a result of she missed the registration deadline.