Caster Semenya, Wayde van Niekerk picked in prelim SA world champs team
Despite a controversial IAAF ruling and a long-term injury respectively, South African superstars Caster Semenya and Wayde van Niekerk have both been included in the national preliminary squad for the world championships in September.
Semenya is still fighting the IAAF regulations for female classification for events from the 400m to the mile, although she gained a valuable victory last week.
The Swiss Federal Supreme Court ruled that the Court for Arbitration for Sport’s finding in favour of the IAAF be suspended until Semenya’s appeal is heard in full.
That means she is free to compete in any event until a final decision is made by the Swiss court.
The 800m Olympic champion is scheduled to run on Tuesday night, though, in a 2 000m event near Paris, while she is down for a 3 000m at the Prefontaine Classic in California on 30 June.
Athletics South Africa announced on Monday that Semenya was included in the world championship team for the 800m, pending the outcome of her appeal.
Be thankful for life. pic.twitter.com/dJSEDs41Zk— Caster Semenya (@caster800m) June 8, 2019
Van Niekerk, who missed last season due to a knee injury, is set to make his return to the track on 20-21 July in London, at a Diamond League event, the Anniversary Games.
Van Niekerk has been listed for the 400m and 4x400m relay for the world champs in Doha, Qatar, but he will have to gain approval from the Athletics SA board.
A number of other top athletes such as sprinters Henricho Bruintjies and Clarence Munyai are also in the same boat.
A further list of previous heavyweight competitors are being monitored to see if they can still qualify, including javelin star Sunette Viljoen and 400m hurdler Wenda Nel.
Preliminary SA Team
Men: Akani Simbine (100m/200m/4x100m), Simon Magakwe (100m/4x100m), Thapelo Phora (400m/4x400m), Tshepo Tshite (800m), Stephen Mokoka (marathon), Desmond Mokgobu (marathon), Benedict Moeng (marathon), David Manja (marathon), Antonia Alkana (110m hurdles), Ruan de Vries (110m hurdles), Lindsey Hanekom (400m hurdles), Wayne Snyman (20km race walking), Marc Mundell (50km race walking), Luvo Manyonga (long jump), Ruswahl Samaai (long jump), Orazio Cremona (shot put).
Women: Caster Semenya (800m), Zeney van der Walt (400m hurdles), Dominique Scott (10 000m).
4x100m men: Thando Dlodlo, Akani Simbine, Emile Erasmus, Chederick van Wyk, Sinesipho Dambile, Anaso Jobodwana.
4x400m men: Gardeo Isaacs, Ranti Dikgale, Thapelo Phora, Ashley Hlungwani, Sokwakhana Zazini, Pieter Conradie, Jon Seeliger.
Subject to board approval
Clarence Munyai (200m/4x100m), Wayde van Niekerk (400m/4x400m), Derick Mokaleng (400m/4x400m), Lebogang Shange (20km race walking), Henricho Bruintjies (100m/4x100m), Phil-Mar Janse van Rensburg (javelin), Rikenette Steenkamp (100m hurdles), Justine Palframan (200m), Carina Horn (100m).
Non-qualified athletes to be monitored
Emile Erasmus (100m), Luxolo Adams (200m), Anaso Jobodwana (200m), Gardeo Isaacs (400m), Rynardt van Rensburg (800m), Kabelo Mahlosi (800m), Ryan Mphahlele (1 500m), Sokwakhana Zanzini (400m hurdles), Khotso Mokoena (triple jump), Zarck Visser (long jump), Victor Hogan (discus), Wenda Nel (400m hurdles), Sunette Viljoen (javelin).@ashfakmohamed