“Doors might be closed not locked”, said double Olympic 800 meters champion Caster Semenya after she lost her long-running legal battle against regulations requiring women with high testosterone to take medication to compete internationally between 400m and a mile.
“Chills my people, a man can change the rules but the very same man can not rule my life, what I’m saying is that I might have failed against them the truth is that I have won this battle long ago, go back to my achievements then you will understand. Doors might be closed not locked,” the South African said in a tweet following the ruling by Swiss Federal Tribunal on Tuesday.
Semenya, an Olympic 800m gold medallist in 2012 and 2016, was challenging the World Athletics regulations which restrict testosterone levels in female athletes. The verdict is a blow to her hopes of being able to defend her 800m title at the Tokyo Olympics, now scheduled for next year due to Covid-19 pandemic.
Meanwhile, World Athletics welcomed the verdict and said: “For the last five years, World Athletics (formerly IAAF) has fought for and defended equal rights and opportunities for all women and girls in our sport today and in the future.
“We therefore welcome today’s decision by the Swiss Federal Tribunal (SFT) to uphold our DSD Regulations as a legitimate and proportionate means of protecting the right of all female athletes to participate in our sport on fair and meaningful terms.
“We are committed to the full participation of women in the sport of athletics, be that as elite female athletes in fair and meaningful competition, as young girls developing life and sport skills, or as administrators or officials.
While there is a lot of work to be done, we are at the forefront of this work, not just for our own sport but for all sport,” it said in a statement.