NEWS
25/04/2018 15:17 SAST | Updated 25/04/2018 15:18 SAST

'Take The Pill, Or Switch Events': IAAF May Have Uncompromising Ultimatum For Semenya

It's been reported that new regulations could bar the South African record-breaker from shorter races, unless she takes testosterone-reducing medication.

Caster Semenya's domination of the female middle-distance track is under threat — the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) is reportedly set to release controversial rule changes for athletes with hyperandrogenism on Thursday.

Hyperandrogenism is a medical condition characterised by excessive levels of androgens ("male" sex hormones such as testosterone) in the female body.

According to multiple reports by The Star, IOL Sports and the Mail & Guardian, the IAAF approved a proposal in March to limit naturally produced testosterone for female competitors running the 400, 800 and 1,500 metres.

The rule will force Semenya either to take testosterone-lowering medication to reduce her naturally occurring testosterone levels, or switch to longer-distance events.

John Sibley / Reuters

If she refuses to take testosterone-lowering medication, she will have to run longer distances — such as the 5,000m and 10,000m.

This ruling comes after Semenya's stellar campaign at the 2018 Commonwealth Games — she broke two records in one race, taking gold in the Women's 800m in a time of 1:56.68 — a Commonwealth Games record. The win also made her the first female athlete to win back-to-back golds in both the 1,500m and 800m.

The two-time Olympic champion will have tough decisions to make, if the reported IAAF ruling is passed.

Lucy Nicholson / Reuters