Highly-criticised world athletics body's rule could end Caster Semenya's career

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) plans to institute a restriction on the testosterone levels of female athletes in November.

If IAAF succeeds, it could dramatically affect the career of South African track star Caster Semenya, says sports Scientist Dr Ross Tucker.

Semenya won in the women's 800m final and claimed the 1 500m victory at the Commonwealth Games - both achieved in Games record times.

Read: Semenya completes Commonwealth Games gold double

Throughout her career, she has had to shrug off the ever-present questions about her right to compete as a woman.

According to Dr Tucker, the IAAF's plans to impose limits on testosterone in female athletes is inconsistent with their own evidence.

In 2012 an IAAF study found that female testosterone levels had the greatest performance impact on the hammer throw and the pole vault in the field events.

Also read: New IAAF study reignites debate of women athletes with higher testosterone

Despite this, the IAAF only wants maximum testosterone level limits for the 400m, the 400m hurdles, the 800m and the 1 500m races.

The policy has only gone part of the way to acting on their own evidence, which is why people are asking what is going on.

Dr Ross Tucker, Sports Scientist at The Science of Sport

The IAAF did a study looking at data from 2012 at the World Champs where they divided all the women competitors into three groups: high testosterone, average testosterone and low testosterone.

Dr Ross Tucker, Sports Scientist at The Science of Sport

Semenya last week went to the Gold Coast and won the 800m and the 1 500m.

Dr Ross Tucker, Sports Scientist at The Science of Sport

The problem is that they have got a policy that has been narrowed down and looks targeted specifically at Semenya.

Dr Ross Tucker, Sports Scientist at The Science of Sport

Dr Tucker explains the technicalities of the testosterone restriction and the impending arbitration process.

Take a listen to his expert sporting analysis:


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI

CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
Semenya completes Commonwealth Games gold double

Semenya completes Commonwealth Games gold double

Caster Semenya claimed her second gold of the Commonwealth Games when she came first in the Women's 800m final.

Jobodwana thumps Gatlin in 150m, while Semenya sets SA record

Jobodwana thumps Gatlin in 150m, while Semenya sets SA record

South African athletes shine at the Liquid Telecom Grand Pix.

Caster Semenya wins 800m gold, claims third World Champs title

Caster Semenya wins 800m gold, claims third World Champs title

Gold medalist Caster Semenya won the 2017 final in London on Sunday night in a time of 1:55.16.

ASA criticised for lack of support to athletes competing in London

ASA criticised for lack of support to athletes competing in London

Sports writer for The Citizen, Wesley Botton, says ASA offer very little support to athletes but takes credit for achievements.

New IAAF study reignites debate of women athletes with higher testosterone

New IAAF study reignites debate of women athletes with higher testosterone

The study, published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, was funded by the IAAF and the World Anti-Doping Agency.

'I'm a cobra actually, unlimited', says Caster Semenya

'I'm a cobra actually, unlimited', says Caster Semenya

SA's 800m Olympian gold medalist, Caster Semenya, says she doesn't focus on her detractors anymore and looks to her supporters.

Hero's welcome for Caster Semenya and the rest of Team SA

Hero's welcome for Caster Semenya and the rest of Team SA

Team South Africa are back on home soil and received a hearty welcome from fans at OR Tambo International Airport this morning.

Popular articles
Parents no longer have to travel with children's birth certificates

Parents no longer have to travel with children's birth certificates

The new Home Affairs upgrades to the system include printing parents details at the back of the child's passport.

SA-made Rolkem cake decoration products may not be safe to eat

SA-made Rolkem cake decoration products may not be safe to eat

The UK’s Food Standards Agency issued an advisory, claiming that Rolkem failed to confirm that their ingredients were safe to eat.

KFC South Africa’s Neymar mocking ad… so epic, Nando’s would be proud!

KFC South Africa’s Neymar mocking ad… so epic, Nando’s would be proud!

The South African ad is still trending around the world. Bruce Whitfield interviews branding and advertising expert Andy Rice.

Madiba’s private secretary Zelda la Grange opens up about money (hers and his)

Madiba’s private secretary Zelda la Grange opens up about money (hers and his)

Bruce Whitfield interviews La Grange about her and Madiba's attitude to money (hopes and fears, successes and failures, etc.)

Criminals targeting homes with aluminium windows, warns neighborhood watch

Criminals targeting homes with aluminium windows, warns neighborhood watch

The Panorama, Welgelegen and Plattekloof Neighbourhood Watch has identified a new house break-in trend.