Her name has dominated sports pages probably more than any other athlete of our time. Welcome to the world of Casper Semenya. Questions have been raised about the two-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time world champion in the 800m race, given her higher-than-normal level of testosterone. Gender tests carried a decade ago showed that Semenya had both male and female characteristics, although the findings were never made public. This has been seen to give the athlete undue advantage over other female competitors.
The 28-year-old has been put through a lot and today will be a defining moment in her life as the Court of Arbitration in Sport (CaS) will give a ruling if she will continue competing as a woman. This is after the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) proposed the restriction of levels of testosterone permitted in female runners in 400m and a mile races. Semenya challenged the ruling at the CaS which she lost. Semenya will be required to take medication to take part in the 400 to the mile events after the arbitration court allowed IAAF to restrict testosterone levels in female runners.
— Caster Semenya (@caster800m) May 1, 2019
Why Semenya Is At An ‘Advantage’ Over Other Female Athletes
The runner has differences of sex development (DSD), which means her hormones, genes, reproductive organs are a mix of both genders. If a research commissioned by IAAF in 2017 is anything to go by, then Semenya testosterone levels give her a 3% edge over her fellow competitors.
The elite athlete has won 29 races in her specialty. This, coupled with a manly physique, was bound to create undue attention on her gender. Here are some of the races Semenya has won:
12TH IAAF World Championship In Berlin-She clocked 1:55.45, only aged 18.
13th IAAF World Championships In Daegue, South Africa-Won Gold
Bagged gold in 2012 Olympic Games held in London
Yet another gold in 2016 Olympic Games held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
2017-Competed in the 800 m and 1500 races in the 16th edition of the World Championships in London, winning gold and bronze medals in respectively.
The following year she bagged gold in both the 800m and 1500m races in the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Queensland, Australia.
Caster Semenya has done her country proud and South Africans have come out to support her. She has made good money thanks to her exploits on the track. In 2017, she earned ZAR200000 ($14,000) in bonus from her government. This is not factoring the cash prize money she earned. Athletes who won gold medals pocket ZAR430,000 ($30,000) in most IAAF meets. Semenya has pocketed in excess of $870,00 (ZAR12,438,255). The athlete estimated net worth is $1.5 million.
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