Although an obnoxious decision was expected, the court ruling in which Olympic 800 champion Caster Semenya lost a landmark case against the world athletics’ governing body was still a shock to many.
The 28-year-old South African athlete had challenged the new IAAF rules at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (Cas) but her appeal was rejected in a decision announced on Wednesday and it’s on that note that Athletics South Africa (ASA) says that the “decision is disgraceful”.
The new IAAF rules put restrictions on testosterone levels in female runners. It suggests that athletes with differences of sexual development (DSD) must take medication to reduce their testosterone levels if they are to compete in some track events or change to another distance.
“We are reeling in shock at how a body held in high esteem like Cas can endorse discrimination without flinching,” the ASA noted in a statement on Wednesday.
“For Cas does not only condone discrimination but also goes to lengths to justify it, only undermines the integrity that this body is entrusted with. We are deeply disappointed and profoundly shocked.”
Meanwhile, Semenya said that she believed that the IAAF “have always targeted me specifically”.
Semenya is still eligible to compete at the Diamond League meet in Doha on Friday and can make an appeal against the Cas ruling to the Swiss Tribunal Courts within the next 30 days.