Caster Semenya won 800m at the IAAF Diamond League Bislett Games in Oslo, Norway in her last race in June. Photo: EPA/VIDAR RUUD NORWAY

JOHANNESBURG - Caster Semenya will challenge the IAAF’s female eligibility rules at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). The New York Times reported on Monday that the South African middle-distance phenom has confirmed she will take on the global athletics governing body’s amended regulations which go into effect in November.

The regulations would attempt to regulate women that naturally produce testosterone levels above five nanomoles per litre and are limited to athletes that compete in events ranging from the 400m to the mile. 

According to a statement released by her lawyers, Semenya labelled the new regulations “discriminatory, irrational, unjustifiable”.

“I am very upset that I have been pushed into the public spotlight again,” Semenya reportedly said in the statement. 

“I don’t like talking about this new rule. I just want to run naturally, the way I was born. It is not fair that I am told I must change. It is not fair that people question who I am. I am Mokgadi Caster Semenya. I am a woman and I am fast.”

The IAAF said research had shown that women competing with a level above the threshold were either (Differences of Sexual Development) DSD athletes, doped athletes or athletes with adrenal or ovarian tumours. 

The new regulations come into effect from November 2018 and female athletes with DSDs would have to use the contraceptive pill to reduce their testosterone below the required levels.

Athletics SA (ASA) and the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) has since the announcement of the new regulations rallied behind Semenya.

IOL Sport

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