The international athletics season is in full swing and has our track and field stars representing the country from the United States to Chinese Tapei.
Semenya will lead a trio of track athletes which includes Anaso Jobodwana and Dominique Scott-Efurd at the Eugene Diamond League meeting.
The middle-distance phenom has established herself as the undisputed two-lap queen over the last two years winning the Diamond Trophy in the 800m in consecutive years.
She will open her 2018 campaign at the Prefontaine Classic where she will line up against the world’s top athletes in her discipline.
The Commonwealth Games 800/1 500m double gold medallist will face perennial challenger Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi and American Ajee Wilson, who won silver and bronze behind her respectively at last year’s World Championships.
To add further class to the 800m race, Olympic bronze medallist Margaret Wambui will once again pose a threat to Semenya’s dominance.
A late entry in the 200m, Jobodwana will be looking to get the advantage over a world-class field.
Early-season times suggests the half-lap sprint should be the event to watch this season with fellow South African Clarence Munyai laying down the marker with a world lead of 19.69 seconds earlier this year.
Jobodwana will be looking to claim some high-profile scalps which include world champion Ramil Guliyev of Turkey and Southern African brother Isaac Makwala of Botswana.
American Noah Lyles is the man to beat after he posted the third fastest time this season when he won the Diamond League opener in Doha with a time of 19.83.
Jobodwana finished third at last weekend’s Jamaica Invitational clocking 20.70 with local 18-year-old Christian Taylor winning the 200m race in a time of 20.49.
Scott-Efurd, who posted a new 1 500m personal best in Boston last weekend will line up in the 5 000m in Eugene.
She will be lining up against some of the globe’s best distance athletes such as Kenyan world champion Hellen Obiri and Ethiopian star Genzebe Dibaba.
World long-jump champion Manyonga will lead the charge at the Taiwan Athletics Open where he will be joined by compatriots, former SA 100m record-holder Henricho Bruintjies and one-lap hurdles ace Cornel Fredericks.
Manyonga will be looking to build on his early-season success which includes the Commonwealth Games gold medal and the Shanghai Diamond League title.