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Semenya fails to reach Olympic qualifying time for 5,000

June 30, 2021 GMT
Caster Semenya reacts before the women's 5000 meter race in Regensburg, Saturday, June 19, 2021. The two-time 800-meter Olympic champion from South Africa once again missed out on qualifying for the Summer Games in Tokyo during her surprising start in Regensburg. (Stefan Puchner/dpa via AP)
Caster Semenya reacts before the women's 5000 meter race in Regensburg, Saturday, June 19, 2021. The two-time 800-meter Olympic champion from South Africa once again missed out on qualifying for the Summer Games in Tokyo during her surprising start in Regensburg. (Stefan Puchner/dpa via AP)

LIEGE, Belgium (AP) — Caster Semenya failed in her bid to achieve the qualifying time for the 5,000 meters at the Tokyo Olympics during a meet in Belgium on Wednesday.

Semenya was taking part in a race at Liege which was held after an Olympic qualifying deadline of June 29 had already expired. The South African athlete finished in fourth place with a time of 15 minutes, 50.12 seconds, meeting organizers said, falling short of her target of 15:10.00.

The two-time Olympic champion has been barred from defending her 800-meter title and from running in events from 400 meters to one mile at top track meets under World Athletics’ testosterone rules. She has refused to bow to those rules and take medication to lower her natural testosterone levels, calling the regulations unfair and discriminatory.

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She can now only run in the 100 and 200 meters, or in long-distance races. All of those events are unfamiliar to her.

Semenya hasn’t given up on getting the rules overturned in court. She said in February she was challenging the testosterone policy at the European Court of Human Rights in her third legal appeal. Semenya has previously lost court cases against World Athletics at the Court of Arbitration for Sport and at the Swiss supreme court. No date has been set for her case at the human rights court but it’s unlikely it would be heard before the Tokyo Games open on July 23.

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