Se­menya goes for gold, no ques­tion

The Star Early Edition - - OPINION & ANALYSIS -

IT’S SHAP­ING up to be an­other re­mark­able week in the il­lus­tri­ous sport­ing ca­reer of our own Caster Se­menya. On Mon­day night, Se­menya pro­duced a storm­ing fin­ish in the women’s 1 500m at the IAAF World Ath­let­ics cham­pi­onship to win the bronze medal, only to once again face fresh ques­tions about her med­i­cal con­di­tion.

When asked whether she would com­ply if the IAAF ruled that she once again take med­i­ca­tion to lower her testos­terone lev­els, Se­menya said: “I’ve no time for non­sense. Med­i­ca­tion or no med­i­ca­tion. For me, it’s their own de­ci­sions. I re­ally don’t have time for non­sense. I don’t fo­cus on the IAAF. It’s not my busi­ness. My busi­ness is to train hard and see what I come up with in com­pe­ti­tion.”

That was a strong, but ma­ture re­sponse. The fact is that, un­til any fur­ther rul­ings (and/or of course any pos­si­ble ap­peals against rul­ings), Se­menya should be al­lowed to run with­out this con­stant dark cloud hang­ing over her head.

It was clear on Mon­day night that the 1 500m is not Se­menya’s favourite event. It was a tac­ti­cal race and she stayed in the bunch far too long. By the time she pro­duced her fa­mous “kick” at the end, she had too much ground to catch up.

Not that she wasn’t thrilled with her bronze medal, as she should be.

But on Sun­day night, bronze will al­most cer­tainly turn to gold. She is the over­whelm­ing favourite to win the 800m race, like she did at the Rio Olympics last year, and once again bring joy to all South African hearts.

We look for­ward to see­ing Se­menya draped in the na­tional flag. If she doesn’t win a medal, then fine.

But if she does win, we hope that Se­menya, the world cham­pion, will be al­lowed to cel­e­brate un­der the Lon­don stars with­out nag­ging ques­tions and in­sin­u­a­tions.

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