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South African Female Athlete Loses Battle to Compete

Two-time Olympic champion Caster Semenya has lost an appeal against the restriction of testosterone in female athletes. Under World Athletics guidelines introduced last year, Semenya would have to take testosterone-reducing drugs in order to compete in races from 400m to a mile, which the 29-year-old has chosen not to do. Switzerland’s Federal Supreme Court dismissed Semenya’s appeal, upholding the ruling made by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) last year regarding female runners, like Semenya, with differences of sexual development (DSD). “I am very disappointed by this ruling, but refuse to let World Athletics drug me or stop me from being who I am,” Semenya said in a statement… Excluding female athletes or endangering our health solely because of our natural abilities puts World Athletics on the wrong side of history.” Semenya, who won 800m gold at the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, in March said she would target the 200m, an event she is permitted to compete in without taking medication to reduce her naturally elevated testosterone levels. She was competing in the 200m in her native South Africa earlier this year with an eye on qualifying for the Olympics before the postponement of this year’s Games was announced.