Semenya out of world champs

2013-07-27 21:19
Caster Semenya (AP)

Johannesburg - Caster Semenya will not compete at next month's IAAF World Championships after narrowly missing out on achieving the qualifying standard in Belgium on Saturday.

Semenya won the women's 800m race at the Flanders Cup meeting in Ninove in 2:01.86 - 0.36 seconds outside the B-standard qualifying time.

Sanne Verstegen of the Netherlands finished second in 2:02.09.

Semenya had won her comeback race last week after a lengthy layoff, but was well outside the qualifying standard, clocking 2:06.58 at the Lahti Games in Finland.

It was her first competitive outing since last year's London Olympic Games, after recovering from a long-term knee problem. She had undergone extensive rehabilitation to correct an imbalance in her leg strength due to the effects of an operation she had as a child.

Semenya improved her season's best by more than two seconds in Lapinlahti on Sunday, winning the two-lap race at the Savo Games in 2:04.48, but again failed to qualify.

Athletics South Africa included seven athletes with B-standard qualifying performances in the provisional team named last week, indicating that Semenya, a medallist at the last two world championships, would have been added to the squad with a 2:01.50 B-standard performance, and would not have needed to meet the 2:00.00 A-standard.

The qualifying deadline for next month's showpiece in Moscow, Russia, is on Monday.


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