Caster Semenya will be looking to take advantage of her brief reprieve from the IAAF’s controversial female eligibility rules when she lines up in her favourite 800m event at the Prefontaine Classic at Stanford University in California on Sunday night.
It is the first time Semenya will race in the two-lap event since the Differences of Sexual Development (DSD) regulations were implemented, then temporarily placed on ice.
The race (10.47pm South African time) may also be her last for the time being as she awaits a decision by the Swiss Federal Court on whether the regulations should remain in force pending her appeal.
The IAAF last week made submissions to the Swiss court requesting the reversal of its super-provisional suspension of the rules relating to Semenya.
Semenya appealed the DSD regulations, which required female athletes with elevated levels of testosterone to lower it or face a ban in the events ranging from the 400m to the mile.
The South African will be looking to get her campaign for a fourth consecutive Diamond League Trophy back on track after she missed two 800m races due to the regulations.
Semenya is still among the top-ranked women in the two-lap event, thanks to her superb season-opener in Doha, where she clocked a world-leading 1:54.98.
She is ranked fifth thanks to her stellar performance there, before the rules went into effect.
The three-time world champion missed out on the Stockholm Diamond League due to the implementation of the new regulations.
And she was denied entry to the Rabat Diamond League meeting despite being given the all clear by the Swiss court.
Semenya accepted an invitation from the Moroccan Athletics Federation to run in Rabat on June 16 before they suddenly denied her entry to race.
“Caster rejects any suggestion that she declined a proper invitation to run in Rabat,” her lawyers said in a statement at the time.
“To the contrary, her inability to run in Rabat is solely due to the Moroccan Federation’s sudden and unjustified withdrawal of its initial invitation that Caster had gladly accepted.”
— Prefontaine Classic (@nikepreclassic)
Meanwhile, Dominique Scott-Efurd will be the only other South African in the Prefontaine Classic field, lining up in the women’s 3 000m.
It is the same event Semenya was supposed to compete in before the regulations were temporarily suspended.