Athletics

Moses: Caster treated 'atrociously' by IAAF

2018-02-27 09:55
Caster Semenya (Getty Images)

Monaco - Back in 2009, Caster Semenya could have been forgiven for thinking that her career was on the brink of early extinction.

That was the year when the IAAF ordered that Semenya undergo a sex verification test to determine if she was in fact female.

It placed the now-27-year-old at the centre of debates surrounding gender testing and the levels of testosterone in female athletes.

After a period of nearly a year out as the IAAF investigated Semenya's situation, she was eventually cleared to return to action in 2010 and was told that she could keep the gold medal she had won at the IAAF World Championships in Berlin.

Ever since then, though, Semenya has performed under a cloud of scrutiny.

In her case, sport has become political.

Semenya's rivals on the track have been vocal on their views that it is "unfair" to compete against a person of her genetic make-up while, in 2016, IAAF president Sebastian Coe questioned the merits of a Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) decision taken in July 2015 that put a stop to testosterone regulation in female athletes.

Coe's remarks intensified the debate once more as Semenya prepared to win gold, which she did, at the Rio Olympics.

As a result of her dominance in that race, Semenya has been nominated to win the Sportswoman of the Year at the Laureus World Sports Awards in Monaco on Tuesday night.

If she does win, it will no doubt be the story of the awards.

Moses, himself a two-time Olympic gold medallist in the 400m hurdles, believes that Semenya completely deserves to be nominated for the award.

Now 62, Moses expressed his views on Semenya while addressing media in Monaco on Monday.

Having spent the last three decades heavily involved in doping testing and trying to get athletics clean, Moses lambasted the way the IAAF had handled Semenya's situation all those years ago.

"I think she was treated wrongly by the federation because of a medical condition that has nothing to do with her wanting to get around the rules," Moses said.

"There is a lot of research out there that discusses the law, the biology, the biochemistry ... I think she was treated unfairly. I'll believe that as long as I'm around."

Moses then praised Semenya for her willingness to come back from the lows of 2009 and 2010 to win Olympic gold in 2016.

"Having gone through all of that, she's a real fighter and she will fight and battle to win. She's tough," he said.

"She's not the only one that's had this condition that she was born with. I know that for sure because I've dealt with cases like that before. I just think she was treated atrociously."

*Lloyd Burnard is in Monaco as a guest of Laureus ...

Read more on:    laureus  |  iaaf  |  laureus awards  |  caster semenya  |  athletics

 

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